Portland Colts

Portland Colts
(1909, 1911, 1912, 1913, 1914)
Portland, Oregon
Cap insignia
Previous Class B
Minor league affiliations
Major league affiliations
Previous Cleveland Indians (unofficial) (1911–14)
Minor league titles
League titles None
Team data
Previous parks

The Portland Colts were a minor league baseball team based in Portland, Oregon for five seasons (1909, 1911–14) in the Class B Northwestern League. The Colts served as an unofficial farm team for the Portland Beavers and the Cleveland Indians.[1] The Colts and Beavers shared Vaughn Street Park.[1] The franchise was established in 1909 by William Wallace McCredie, who was the owner of the Beavers and a sitting Congressman. The team was disbanded after their first season, with McCredie selling several players to the Beavers. McCredie originally said he did not want to run two teams, but changed his mind in 1911 when he placed a bid for a Northwestern League franchise. The league penalized McCredie with a US$1,000 re-entry fee and adopted new rules when it came to selling players from your team.

In 1911, the Portland team was not officially named, but the "Colts" nickname returned at the start of the 1912 season. The Colts had two managers over their five seasons, Pearl Casey (1909) and Nick Williams (1911–14). Towards the end of the 1914 season, McCredie sold the team to timber mogul Quinn Farr who relocated the team to his native Ballard, Washington and changed their name to the Ballard Pippins.[2] National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum members Harry Heilmann and Dave Bancroft played for the Colts. Several other Major League Baseball alumni graced the Colts roster throughout their five seasons of existence. Aside from playing in the Northwestern League the Colts also played several exhibition games including one during the 1913 season against the Chicago American Giants of the Negro leagues.


Before the start of the 1909 season, the Colts held their training camp in Ashland, Oregon.[3] The team toured several Oregon towns including Jacksonville and Grants Pass and played baseball teams composed of locals.[4] The Colts first game was played on April 4, 1909 against the Seattle Turks at Dugdale Field in front of 8,000 attendees. Seattle defeated Portland, 5–2.[5] The Colts home opener in Portland was held before the Portland Beavers home opener on May 11, 1909 at Vaughn Street Park. The games would be preceded by a parade for each teams. The Colts parade consisted of 60 automobiles. John F. Carroll threw out the ceremonial first pitch to district attorney George G. Cameron.[6] The Colts won their home opener 3–2 against the Tacoma Tigers.[7] The Northwestern League teams, including Portland, started attracting gamblers who made wagers on the games at local tobacco stores.[8] In August 1909, the Colts traded Bill Chenault, Phil Cooney and Tom Murray to the Pacific Coast League (PCL) Portland Beavers in exchange for Charlie Armbruster and Dick Breen.[9] For the entire 1909 season, Pearl Casey served as the Colts player-manager and led the club to a 79–88 record.[10] In January 1910, the Colts owner William W. McCredie, who also owned the Beavers, decided to disband the team due to the strain of managing two teams playing on the same field. McCredie did claim that the Portland Colts turned a profit in their first season.[11] The president of the league, William H. Lucas, said he was disappointing that Portland was abandoning its efforts to keep their second minor league team. He subsequently announced he was moving the league offices from the city of Portland to a city that housed a Northwest League team.[12]

Despite giving the Northwestern League franchise up in 1910, William W. McCredie looked to return a second team to Portland for the 1911 season. It was agreed upon by the league after Portland paid a US$1,000 entry fee. To avoid conflicts with Pacific Coast League games played at Vaughn Street Park the Northwestern League agreed to let PCL games get higher priority if any scheduling errors arose. McCredie agreed to a waiver clause that stated if he was to disband his team again, other Northwestern League teams would be able to buy their players before an outside league. The reason for this rule was because McCredie dumped all of his players from the 1909 season, even adding some to his PCL team for discounted prices.[13] The team held work outs at Columbia University before the start of the 1911 season.[14] Due to conflicts with the PCL schedule, the Northwestern League team played 15 weeks in other cites as opposed to nine weeks at home in 1911.[15] Portland played at McKenna Park in the University Park neighborhood on Sunday exhibition games during the season.[16]

At the end of the 1912 Northwestern League season the Colts played an exhibition game against the Portland Beavers at Vaughn Street Park.[17] An avid supporter of integration in baseball, the Colts owner William W. McCredie requested an exhibition game be played against the Negro league Chicago American Giants in 1913. Later, the Northwestern League scheduled every team in the league play an exhibition game against the Negro league team.[18] In 1914, the Colts held their annual training camp in Santa Rosa, California.[19] During the 1914 mid-season, McCredie sold the Colts to timber mogul Quinn Farr who announced his intention of relocation the team to Ballard, Washington. The reason for the sale of the team, McCredie claimed, was due to the fact Portland's franchise was going to be revoked for the 1915 season because opponents travel expenses to the city were too high.[20]

Notable players

National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum member Harry Heilmann played for the Portland Colts during the 1913 season
Dave Bancroft played three years in Portland, Oregon, one with the Colts.
Ed Pinnance, the first Native American to play in Major League Baseball, was a member of the Colts in 1909.
HOF Indicates a member of the National Baseball Hall of Fame.
Name Position Year(s) Ref
Dave Bancroft HOF Shortstop 1913 [21]
Jack Bradley Catcher 1911 [22]
Ray Callahan Pitcher 1912 [23]
Al Carson Pitcher 1913 [24]
Jack Fournier First baseman 1909 [25]
Howie Haworth Catcher 1914 [26]
Harry Heilmann HOF Outfielder 1913 [27]
Oscar Jones Pitcher 1914 [28]
Jack Kibble Infielder 1912 [29]
Ed Kinsella Pitcher 1909 [30]
Fred Lamlein Pitcher 1911 [31]
Chris Mahoney Outfielder 1912 [32]
Carl Mays Pitcher 1913 [33]
Kid Mohler Second baseman 1913 [34]
Charlie Mullen First baseman 1909 [35]
Milo Netzel Outfielder 1913–14 [36]
Ned Pettigrew Outfielder 1911 [37]
Ed Pinnance Pitcher 1909 [38]
Tom Seaton Pitcher 1909 [39]
Buck Stanley Pitcher 1913 [40]
Jesse Stovall First baseman 1911 [41]


Single-season records

This is a list of leaders of single-season statistics for the Portland Colts.

Year Player Category Record
1913 Harry Heilmann Batting average .305
1911 Howard Mundorff Hits 184
1912 Edward Fries At-bats 660
1911 Howard Mundorff Doubles 36
1912 Bill Speas Triples 11
1912 Lee Strait Home runs 21
1909 Ed Kinsella Wins 23
Ed Pinnance,
Elmer Leonard
Losses 18

See also


  1. 1 2 Carlson, Kip; Andresen, Paul (September 1, 2004). "1". The Portland Beavers. Arcadia Publishing. p. 15. ISBN 0-7385-3266-5.
  2. "1914 Portland Colts/Ballard Pippins". Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2009-11-25.
  3. Petrain, W. J (29 March 1909). "Prospects good for ball season; Coast League teams are in fine trim for the opening games Tuesday". The Oregonian. Medford, Oregon. p. 5.
  4. Mac Rae, Will G. (3 April 1909). "Colts Win Again. Take Game before Crowd at Jacksonville, 7 to 1". The Oregonian. Medford, Oregon. p. 12.
  5. "Big crowds see opening games; Northwestern League makes fine start; Seattle defeats Portland". The Oregonian. Seattle, Washington. 5 April 1909.
  6. "Northerners to open here today; Casey's men will try conclusions with Tacoma if weather permits". The Oregonian. 11 May 1909. p. 7.
  7. Petrain, W. J. (11 May 1909). "Colts start off in proper manner; Win first game of Northwestern season here by 3-to-2 score". The Oregonian. p. 7.
  8. Mac Rae, Will (16 May 1909). "Vancouver fine baseball town; Will Mac Rac tells of Colts trip to northern city where Sunday games are taboo". The Oregonian. Vancouver, British Columbia. p. 4.
  9. Petrain, W. J. (16 August 1909). "Beavers absorb trio from Colts. Cooney, Chenault and Murray to play". The Oregonain. Portland, Oregon. p. 12.
  10. "Farce ends game; Will Mac Rae protesting put on bench in Spokane". The Oregonian. 4 October 1909. p. 15.
  11. Petrain, W. J. (2 January 1910). "Dropping of club business action Northwestern team made but slight money for McCredie so cut was made". The Oregonian. p. 5.
  12. Petrain, W. J. (13 January 1910). "Lucas compelled to quit Portland Northwestern League chief hates to leave good city". The Oregonian. p. 7.
  13. Smith, Harry B. (21 October 1910). "Hetling case is sent up higher; Portland to have two teams next year". The Oregonian. p. 10.
  14. "Team gets "Gym"; Williams' Northwestern boys train at Columbia". The Oregonian. 24 February 1911. p. 8.
  15. "Team long on road Portland to see but 9 weeks of Northwestern ball". The Oregonian. 26 February 1911. p. 9.
  16. "Seals win twice San Francisco defeats Hanford and Reds". The Oregonain. Portland, Oregon. 27 February 1911. p. 11.
  17. "Beavers vs. Colts is novel schedule; Portland's Class AA and Class B teams to clash September 30; Victoria here tomorrow". The Oregonian. 28 July 1912. p. 3.
  18. "Negroes plan iour; American Giants to meet Colts in Portland; Comparison is possible". The Oregonian. 21 March 1913. p. 14.
  19. "Practice schedule of Colts is fixed; Williams to break camp on March 23 and play on way north". The Oregonian. 14 March 1914. p. 6.
  20. "Fielders Jones to resign, is belief; Sale of Colts may cause demand for man from another city to head league". The Oregonian. 20 July 1914. p. 8.
  21. "Dave Bancroft". baseball-reference.com. Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2009-11-25.
  22. "Jack Bradley Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  23. "Ray Callahan Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  24. "Al Carson Minor League Statistics & History". Basketball-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  25. "Jack Fournier". baseball-reference.com. Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2009-11-25.
  26. "Howie Haworth Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  27. "Harry Heilmann". baseball-reference.com. Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2009-11-25.
  28. "Oscar Jones". baseball-reference.com. Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2009-11-25.
  29. "Jack Kibble Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  30. "Ed Kinsella Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  31. "Fred Lamlein Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  32. "Chris Mahoney Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  33. "Carl Mays". baseball-reference.com. Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2009-11-25.
  34. "Kid Mohler Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  35. "Charlie Mullen". baseball-reference.com. Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2009-11-25.
  36. "Milo Netzel Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  37. "Ned Pettigrew Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  38. "Ed Pinnance Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  39. "Tom Seaton". baseball-reference.com. Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2009-11-25.
  40. "Buck Stanley Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  41. "Jesse Stovall Minor League Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2 February 2014.

External links

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