$1964 Raised but $536 Left to Raise in 60 Hours

Yesterday, pledges were added or increased to my Kickstarter effort for my Ken Boyer book to bring the total amount raised as of this morning to $1964.

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Anyone who knows about Ken Boyer and the St. Louis Cardinals realizes the significance of that number.

It was in 1964 that the Cardinals made an August-September comeback to clinch the National League pennant on the last day of the season. It was also the year that Ken, the team captain, batted .295 with 24 homers and 119 RBIs and was named the N.L. Most Valuable Player.

Whether it’s successful or not (though I hope it is!), I’m very grateful and appreciative of the support shown through the pledges that have been made. It’s nice to know there are still fans of Ken who remember him and the personal qualities and talent he brought to the St. Louis Cardinals and–I’m finding out–to the other teams he played for and managed as well.

If you would like to make a pledge, please visit the Kickstarter page and click “Make a Pledge” in the right-hand column. Thank you!

PROJECT UPDATES

On Saturday, I had the opportunity to interview former major-league pitcher Tommy John, who was Ken’s teammate with the Chicago White Sox in 1967 and ’68. The two became good friends and Ken would invite him to go quail hunting in the winter near his home in Hermann, Missouri.

Daniel Shoptaw of the Cards Conclave blog wrote a nice post about the project and the Kickstarter effort this morning. (Thank you so much to Christine at the Aaron Miles’ Fastball blog for her help in spreading the word about them!)

I’ve been working diligently on the manuscript this past week and have finished a first draft of the chapter(s) dealing with Ken’s minor-league seasons at Lebanon and Omaha, as well as what I know so far about his military service. This week, I will start working on his season with the Houston Buffaloes of the Double-A Texas League. It was his performance at Houston that convinced the Cardinals he could be their starting third baseman in 1955–and for years to come.

UPDATE: While writing this post, a $75 pledge was made to bring the total to $2,039.14! Only $460.86 left to go in 59 hours.

2nd UPDATE: A $15 pledge has brought the total up to $2,054.14! Only $445.86 left in 58 hours.

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Kitty League Fans!

Fans of the Class D Kentucky-Illinois-Tennessee League (better known as the Kitty League), I need your memories!

It’s been my goal for the last 10 years to write a comprehensive, season-by-season account of the league’s history. I still intended to do it, but I still have a lot of work and research to finish before it’s completed. In the meantime, I would like to begin work on what I call a “nostalgia” book about the Kitty League. It would be a book filled with pictures, memorabilia, and fan memories.

If you lived in Fulton, Cairo, Jackson, Owensboro, Paducah, Union City, Mayfield, or Madisonville, do you remember what it was like to go to a game as a kid, sell tickets or work concessions, be a batboy, catch foul balls, or any other experiences at your local ballpark? If so, I’d love to hear from you! Who were your favorite players and managers? What do you recall about the ballparks themselves? Did any of them stay at your house? Any memories at all, I would like to include in this book. Send me an e-mail!