[Victoria Colonist, March 10, 1953]
Victoria Tyees, defending champions of the Western International Baseball League, won’t have any shortage of players from which to choose their 1953 team when they open spring training at Sonoma, Calif., on March 24.
They added another player to their—lengthy—and growing list yesterday when manager Cec Garriott signed a colored outfielder who brings a promising 1952 record to his new club.
The latest to aspire to Tyee spangles this year is 22-year-old Ralph Tyler, who compiled a gaudy .371 batting average at Yuma in the class “C” Southwest International League last season. There were no further details about his acquisition but he was signed as a free agent.
Meanwhile, it was learned that Joe Ciardy, the first baseman-outfielder purchased earlier from Las Vegas, where he compiled a .346 batting average last season, is at the training camp of the Portland Beavers for a trial.
There was no other definite news about the Tyees yesterday expect the fact that Garriott attended the Portland camp at Glendale on Sunday to take a look at the players likely to come to Victoria.
PAIR MAY STICK
Garriott reported to business manager Reg Patterson yesterday that Ben Lorino and Jehosie Heard have both looked good in exhibition games with the Beavers. Lorino was hit rather freely Wednesday but the Beaver management appeared to be impressed with his chances to stick, undoubtedly taking into consideration the fact that he has had little training. Heard, with the benefit of winter-long play in Venezuela, breezed through a stint against San Diego in a Sunday game.
Present indications are that the Beavers will be able to supply the Tyees with good pitching but that the Victoria club may have to pick up an infielder and a catcher elsewhere before it is set.
PLENTY OF PITCHING
Frank Chase, Adolph Stalick, Don Hopp, Dick Waibel and, perhaps, Heard or Lorino are being mentioned as 1953 Tyees along with Bill Bottler and several others, including Bill Prior.
For outfield duty, the Tyees can pick from Garriott, Tyler, Ciardy, and Gail Taylor, the other player purchased from Las Vegas. There is also a good chance that Bob Moniz will be back and a fair chance that Granny Gladstone will be returned. In addition, Dwane Helbig, with the club the latter part of the season, will be available in June and Herman Charles, rookie Panamanian Negro, will be out to win a spot. Charles has been held up by the difficulties imposed by the McCarran Act but is expected to get clearance in a matter of days.
For infield duty, the Tyees have holdovers Lu Branham, Don Pries and Jim Clark as well as several of the dozen or so rookies who will get a chance. Pries may get a shot at first base if the club comes up with a third baseman but both Ciardy and Charles can hold down the initial sack.
Milt Martin is the top man behind the plate. Ron Bottler, who probably would have been the first-string receiver, is due to report for induction in the U.S. Army in June but it is not known whether or not he will spend the time with the Tyees.