Jamestown Evening Journal


Jamestown Player Purchased By Detroit A. L. Club
Price Said To Be $5,000

Erickson Was One of the Leading Pitchers in the International League Last Year –
Began his Career as a Member of the Jamestown A. C. Team in the City League –
Jumped to Feds at Close of Last Season

Eric (Swat) Erickson, who began his baseball career as a member of the Jamestown A. C. team in the local City League a few years ago and who many predicted would go to the “big show,” has lived up to his expectations of his many friends here. According to a report from Buffalo, he was yesterday purchased by the Detroit American league club at a price said to be something like $5,000.

In commenting on Erickson’s sale to the Tigers, the Buffalo Courier this morning had the following to say:

“By a significant coincidence another former International leaguer, who made the hurdle to the Feds but who never wore a Fed uniform, found his way into the majors yesterday. Eric Erickson, a tall, lanky, blond-haired heaver whom Bison fans will remember as one of the best pitchers in the International league last season, was sold to the Tigers. Erickson was with Rochester last year and pitched some mighty fine ball on the Ferry Street lot against our Bisons. When Jawn Ganzel deserted the Hustlers to take charge of the Brooklyn Federals and a fat salary, he induced several of his most promising players to follow him. Erickson was one of them. The tall Swedish person jumped after the season was over and never pitched for the Brook-Feds, but Jennings’ scouts had been watching his work in the International league and the Tigers owners are said to have handed over something like $5,000 to ascertain if Eric will be worth anything in helping them win a pennant.

“In buying Erickson, there is no doubt that the Tigers got one of the most promising young pitchers who ever fanned a batsman in the International league - and Eric fanned many of them right in our home park. He was second in the league in fanning honors. Russell lead with .239. Erickson finished with a percentage of .636 for a team that finished fourth. As Bison fans remember, Eric is no little fellow. He stands 6 feet, 2 inches and weighs about 190 pounds.

“Joe Yeager, who managed the Skeeters last season, is aid to have given Jennings the tip on Erickson. Ganzel got him from the Giants who discovered him in the Texas league.

“Erickson is about the sixteenth pitcher who Jennings has annexed during the winter and it looks as if Hughey will lead all the managers in the number of heaving recruits whom he will take south. It’s going to be a tough fight between the youngsters, fraught with many disappointments.”

There is little doubt in the minds of any of Swat’s friends here but that he will make good with Jennings and his Tiger crew. In fact a number of big league players who saw him in action last year claimed that he had as much, if not more, stuff than many of the pitchers holding steady jobs in the big circuits.

As has been previously mentioned, Erickson began his career with the local J. A. C. team and he was the club’s mainstay. There was seldom a game in which he did not register 20 or more strikeouts and in addition he was a heavy hitter, receiving his nickname through his ability to knock the cover off the ball.

He was a member of the J., A. C. when Hugh Lerow organized his Jamestown independent team four years ago and Erickson was given a job on the twirling staff. He did not remain there long, however, as a Texas league scout came through here early in the season and grabbed both Swat and Phil Carling for the Dallas club in the Lone Star circuit. The big boy made good with a vengeance in the Texas league ranking as one of the leading twirlers. He put in only one season in the south, however, when John McGraw picked him up for his Giants. From that point on his history is well-known. Swat has hundreds of friends in this city who will pull hard for him to make good in his new berth.

The additional financial assistance of the community is critical to the success of the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame.
We gratefully acknowledge these individuals and organizations for their generous support.