UNUSUAL BALLPARKS—“THE SMEAD JOLLEY STORY.” After the posts on unusual ballparks, I realized that I should post on the “Smead Jolley Story”, which wikipedia research (see here) shows is about “Duffy’s Cliff”, which between 1912 and 1933 was a ten-foot high incline in front of the left field wall in Fenway Park. My father used to tell the “Smead Jolley story” at our dinner table. Zeke Bonura (whom I posted on here) was not the only “good hit no field” player that the White Sox had in the 1930’s. Baseball Reference describes Smead here as “one of the greatest hitters ever” and as “one of the worst outfielders ever” and recounts the “Smead Jolley Story.” My father would describe the efforts the Boston coaches made to teach Smead how to go up the ten-foot incline after a fly ball, how Smead did it successfully in a game, how he then turned to make a throw and fell down the ten-foot incline, and how he complained when he got to the dugout. Baseball Reference has Smead saying: “”For ten days you teach me to go up the hill, but none of you have the brains to teach me how to come down.”

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