1954 Montreal Royals Team Photo . . . Joe Carbonaro

By Kevin Glew Cooperstowners in Canada You wouldn’t believe the stories this retired cabinetmaker can tell you. Like how he hated throwing batting practice to Roberto Clemente, because almost everything the free-swinging outfielder hit went right back “through the box.” Or about how he shared a spring training complex with Jackie Robinson. “Vero Beach (theContinue reading “1954 Montreal Royals Team Photo . . . Joe Carbonaro”

1954 Montreal Royals Team Photo . . . Dixie Howell

Montreal Gazette reporter Dink Carroll referred to Homer “Dixie” Howell as “the prodigal son.” The description was apt when you consider that Howell played parts of six seasons, in four separate stints, with the Montreal Royals. No matter where the likeable catcher traveled during his lengthy professional baseball odyssey, his road always seemed to pointContinue reading “1954 Montreal Royals Team Photo . . . Dixie Howell”

1954 Montreal Royals Team Photo . . . Jack Cassini

Jesse Owens is the only person that could beat Jack Cassini in a foot race. At least that’s what the former Montreal Royal told the Arizona Republic in an interview in March 2008. “I could hit, and I could run like hell,” Cassini told the paper. The ex-big leaguer was 88 when he made thisContinue reading “1954 Montreal Royals Team Photo . . . Jack Cassini”

1954 Montreal Royals Team Photo … Joe Black

“He was not a star, but a nova, appearing, flaring and disappearing . . . “                                                                           Roger Kahn, The Boys of Summer It would be difficult to describe Joe Black’s major league career more accurately and eloquently than Kahn did in his acclaimed 1972 book about the Brooklyn Dodgers. After toeing the rubber inContinue reading “1954 Montreal Royals Team Photo … Joe Black”

1954 Montreal Royals Team Photo . . . Humberto (Chico) Fernandez

It’s not easy being a prospect when the player you’re touted to replace is a perennial all-star and fan favourite. That’s the position that Humberto “Chico” Fernandez found himself in after he was signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers as a 19-year-old in 1951. Once the slick-fielding shortstop was in the Dodgers’ system, it seemed thatContinue reading “1954 Montreal Royals Team Photo . . . Humberto (Chico) Fernandez”

The 1954 Montreal Royals team photo . . . Billy Harris

His first professional baseball contract was signed in a quintessentially Canadian setting. New Brunswick native Billy Harris was competing in a hockey tournament in Buchans, Nfld., when Brooklyn Dodgers scout Bill O’Connor secured the stocky 19-year-old’s signature on a piece of paper. Although the five-foot-seven Harris was a standout stickhandler, it was his right armContinue reading “The 1954 Montreal Royals team photo . . . Billy Harris”

The 1954 Montreal Royals team photo . . . Roberto Clemente

When I worked at the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame in St. Marys in 2008 and 2009, I found myself fascinated with a 1954 Montreal Royals team photo. From 1939 to 1960, the Royals were the Triple-A farm team of the Brooklyn Dodgers, so baseball immortals like Jackie Robinson, Duke Snider, Roy Campanella and DonContinue reading “The 1954 Montreal Royals team photo . . . Roberto Clemente”