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Pete Ward
08-24-2002, 05:49 PM
Sorry if this has already been posted.

I began watching the Sox closely in 1964 and Hoyt was one of my favorite White Sox.

He passed away in Fla at the age of 79.

Hall of Famer, a gentleman.

Jjav829
08-24-2002, 05:55 PM
R.I.P. Hoyt Wilhelm (http://msn.espn.go.com/classic/obit/s/2002/0824/1422325.html)

MarkEdward
08-24-2002, 06:18 PM
For a 40 year old, he had some damn good seasons for the Sox.

CiscoCarlos
08-24-2002, 07:57 PM
Originally posted by MarkEdward
For a 40 year old, he had some damn good seasons for the Sox.

I'll say. He got better as he went on, with an incredible 1967.
1963: 5-8 2.64
1964 12-9 1.99
1965 7-7 1.81
1966 5-2 1.86
1967 8-3 1.31
1968 4-4 1.73
Also 98 of his 227 saves came as a White Sox, well before the save mania era. No one in that five year period came close to 98 saves. And then he left a great legacy when the Sox mistakenly let him go in the expansion draft as he's the one who taught Wilbur Wood how to throw the knuckler.

As Red Rush used to say when he'd flutter the ball past the likes of Hawk Harrelson, "Dr. Wilhelm and his magic Knuckleball." He was such a big part of a great Sox era.

VeeckAsInWreck
08-24-2002, 08:34 PM
I never got to see him play, but I have a question for those of you who did. How close was Tom Candiotti's portrayal of Wilhelm in the movie, "*61"? I mean, did he really lean his head the way he did or was it just a movie exaggeration?

idseer
08-24-2002, 09:05 PM
Originally posted by VeeckAsInWreck
I never got to see him play, but I have a question for those of you who did. How close was Tom Candiotti's portrayal of Wilhelm in the movie, "*61"? I mean, did he really lean his head the way he did or was it just a movie exaggeration?

here's a hint. he was known as 'old tilt'.

Lip Man 1
08-24-2002, 10:07 PM
When I spoke with both J.C. Martin and Billy Pierce they told me that Hoyt was having medical problems.

A fine gentleman and a great pitcher.

I remember seeing him on "White Sox Night" at the old "free fair" in the back of the yards section of Chicago (The free fair was held every Summer at 47th and Damen). Thousands of fans were there and Hoyt was polite, gracious and signed as many autographs as he could.

I remember I used to plead with my folks to take me on "White Sox Night" alas that was a long time ago.

By the way if you are interested J.C. Martin talked about catching Hoyt (and Eddie Fisher and Wilber Wood) in the interview that I did with him. Go to the main page, scroll down and look for the link on the far left side that says "WSI Interviews". Click on it and it'll take you to all the ones that I've done.

By the way Mike Andrews was great! His interview comes out at the end of September.

Lip

oldcomiskey
08-24-2002, 10:44 PM
He also taught Wilbur Wood the knuckleball----saving his career--what was it hawk said---he had one hit in 5 years off Wilhelm--he will be missed

DVG
08-24-2002, 11:38 PM
Originally posted by VeeckAsInWreck
I never got to see him play, but I have a question for those of you who did. How close was Tom Candiotti's portrayal of Wilhelm in the movie, "*61"? I mean, did he really lean his head the way he did or was it just a movie exaggeration?

I read (it may not be true) that he held his head at a tilt because
of a wound he suffered in WW II.

He was, at the time of his retirement in 1972, the last active
major leaguer to have served in WW II.

Ol Aches & Pains
08-25-2002, 07:57 PM
Hoyt Wilhelm retired in the first season of the DH, so he had to hit throughout his career. My favorite Wilhelm anecdote is that he hit a home run in his first major league at bat, played for 22 years, and never hit another one.

DVG
08-25-2002, 11:09 PM
Originally posted by Ol Aches & Pains
Hoyt Wilhelm retired in the first season of the DH, so he had to hit throughout his career. My favorite Wilhelm anecdote is that he hit a home run in his first major league at bat, played for 22 years, and never hit another one.

I believe that Wilhelm is one of only two Hall-of-Famers to homer
in their first ML at-bat.

chisox59
08-27-2002, 03:45 AM
Anyone remember when Bob Elson used to describe Hoyt's call
in from the bullpen as "It'll be Doctor Wilhelm and his Dancing
Medicine Show".

TornLabrum
08-27-2002, 11:11 AM
Originally posted by chisox59
Anyone remember when Bob Elson used to describe Hoyt's call
in from the bullpen as "It'll be Doctor Wilhelm and his Dancing
Medicine Show".

I believe it was "Dr. Wilhelm and his traveling medicine show."

Nellie_Fox
08-27-2002, 12:50 PM
Originally posted by TornLabrum
I believe it was "Dr. Wilhelm and his traveling medicine show." Nope. Definitely "dancing medicine show."

duke of dorwood
08-27-2002, 03:29 PM
I remember "travelling medicine show". Anyway, my dad took me to the front row of the upper deck behind home plate on a night he pitched. I NEVER saw anything like the way that ball floated and moved around. It was that slow. What a great player he was. Funny that a Jose Canseco wore his number here.

TornLabrum
08-27-2002, 03:56 PM
Originally posted by Nellie_Fox
Nope. Definitely "dancing medicine show."

What the hell is a dancing medicine show. In the old west, "snake oil peddlers ran "traveling medicine shows." And that was what Elson was making reference to. It was "traveling."

Nellie_Fox
08-27-2002, 04:08 PM
Originally posted by TornLabrum
What the hell is a dancing medicine show. In the old west, "snake oil peddlers ran "traveling medicine shows." And that was what Elson was making reference to. It was "traveling." It was in reference to the way the knuckler danced on the way to the plate. The medicine the good doctor was bringing with him was the knuckle ball.

I just did a whole bunch of searches trying to find reference to it, without success, then went and read the article right here on WSI. Therein it is referred to as the "dancing medicine show."
In 1966, because of injuries to two other Sox catchers, John "Honey" Romano, an experienced receiver had to try to catch the "dancing medicine show." It was quite a scene. Wilhelm’s first two throws got past Romano and went to the backstop. After the third pitch floated by him, Romano started walking towards the Sox dugout, ripping off his mask and gear and throwing them into the dugout. Sox manager Eddie Stanky had to push him back on to the playing field.

TornLabrum
08-27-2002, 06:16 PM
Originally posted by Nellie_Fox
It was in reference to the way the knuckler danced on the way to the plate. The medicine the good doctor was bringing with him was the knuckle ball.

I just did a whole bunch of searches trying to find reference to it, without success, then went and read the article right here on WSI. Therein it is referred to as the "dancing medicine show."


Again, the term "dancing medicine show" makes no sense. I listened to Elson regularly and never recall him using that term. What I recall him using was "traveling medicine show."

Nellie_Fox
08-28-2002, 11:30 AM
It makes sense to me, since, as I explained, the knuckle ball "dances." Actually, I didn't say it was Elson; in all honesty I thought it was Brickhouse, but I'm not sure about that.

Continuing to argue is pointless, because unless someone comes up with some old audio of the phrase, neither of us can prove which is right. All I know is that I remember it very clearly, and since more than one of us remembers it as "dancing medicine show," which (as you point out) is not what one would intuitively come up with, I'm quite comfortable trusting my memory.

PaleHoseGeorge
08-28-2002, 12:34 PM
You know something, I honestly feel young again listening to you old geezers fight over this subject.

I'm too young to remember any of this stuff.

:)

Paulwny
08-28-2002, 12:38 PM
Originally posted by PaleHoseGeorge
You know something, I honestly feel young again listening to you old geezers fight over this subject.

I'm too young to remember any of this stuff.

:)

I listened to the games back then but I'm too senile to remember.

Nellie_Fox
08-28-2002, 01:08 PM
Originally posted by PaleHoseGeorge
You know something, I honestly feel young again listening to you old geezers fight over this subject.

I'm too young to remember any of this stuff.:) Why, in my day we didn't have any fancy cable TV. We watched the games on black and white sets, trying to tune in a picture through the interference. The TV was usually broken and in the shop, so one of us would get inside the empty cabinet and pretend we were Jack Brickhouse calling the game, and we liked it! We liked it fine!.

Pete Ward
08-28-2002, 01:37 PM
Back .... Back .... Back....

HEY HEY

Atta boy (insert Cub here)!

and....

Any old kind of a run here wins it!

Racing home after school to watch the end on Cub games on WGN was GREAT. Ahhhh yes... memories

voodoochile
08-28-2002, 02:17 PM
Originally posted by Nellie_Fox
Why, in my day we didn't have any fancy cable TV. We watched the games on black and white sets, trying to tune in a picture through the interference. The TV was usually broken and in the shop, so one of us would get inside the empty cabinet and pretend we were Jack Brickhouse calling the game, and we liked it! We liked it fine!.

But first you had to carry that cabinet 2 miles each direction uphill both ways, right?

:D:

Nellie_Fox
08-28-2002, 02:22 PM
Originally posted by voodoochile


But first you had to carry that cabinet 2 miles each direction uphill both ways, right?

:D: Yeah, and one of us had to stand up on the peak of the roof and hold the antenna.

voodoochile
08-28-2002, 02:24 PM
Originally posted by Nellie_Fox
Yeah, and one of us had to stand up on the peak of the roof and hold the antenna.

What, no tinfoil? Boy, you did have a rough life...

TornLabrum
08-28-2002, 11:32 PM
Originally posted by Nellie_Fox
It makes sense to me, since, as I explained, the knuckle ball "dances." Actually, I didn't say it was Elson; in all honesty I thought it was Brickhouse, but I'm not sure about that.

Continuing to argue is pointless, because unless someone comes up with some old audio of the phrase, neither of us can prove which is right. All I know is that I remember it very clearly, and since more than one of us remembers it as "dancing medicine show," which (as you point out) is not what one would intuitively come up with, I'm quite comfortable trusting my memory.

More than one of us remembers "treveling medicine show," too. And I trust my memory on this pretty well. And yes, both Elson and Brickhouse used to talk about the "dancing" knuckler he threw. And that's where you're mixing things up in your memory. It doesn't help when someone has recently posted "dancing medicine show" on this web site to "aid" your memory either.

Lip Man 1
08-28-2002, 11:52 PM
From Rich Lindberg's book: "Who's On Third?" Published in 1983.

QUOTE: Page 115..."Hoyt Wilhelm brought his "DANCING MEDICINE SHOW" to Chicago with immediate success. His head appeared to be screwed on sideways but he got the job done..."

TornLabrum
08-28-2002, 11:56 PM
Originally posted by Lip Man 1
From Rich Lindberg's book: "Who's On Third?" Published in 1983.

QUOTE: Page 115..."Hoyt Wilhelm brought his "DANCING MEDICINE SHOW" to Chicago with immediate success. His head appeared to be screwed on sideways but he got the job done..."

Rich did not attribute this phrase to Elson, and he got it wrong. Try this: Go to google and type "Dr. Wilhelm's Traveling Medicine Show" and see if you get a hit. The try your phrase.

Yeah, I know, but I'm still right.

TornLabrum
08-29-2002, 12:13 AM
Originally posted by TornLabrum


Rich did not attribute this phrase to Elson, and he got it wrong. Try this: Go to google and type "Dr. Wilhelm's Traveling Medicine Show" and see if you get a hit. The try your phrase.

Yeah, I know, but I'm still right.

I'll elaborate on what I just emailed Lip in response to his email to me, again quoting Lindberg.

The analogy of the "traveling medicine show" involves deception, someone being fooled into something. In the old west "snake oil" salesmen used to travel from town to town with their "traveling medicine shows." When they came to town they would pitch their medicine, fooling their gullible customers into buying the medicine. This is the analogy that Elson was using.
Wilhelm fooled the opposing hitters into swinging at something that just wasn't there, just like the curative powers of the "snake oil" weren't there. Hence, "Dr. Wilhelm's Traveling Medicine Show."

There is no such thing as a "dancing medicine show," and Elson was too literate to make up a non-sequiter like that. Yes, he (and Brickhouse) would refer to his "dancing" knuckler. What Rich did in "Who's on 3rd" was to mix up the two different phrases in his memory.

I will also mention another bit of information that strengthens my memory. My dad used to always make fun of Elson, especially the whole thing about "Dr. Wilhelm's Traveling medicine Show." That memory is as vivid as Elson saying exactly that.

My reference is first-hand knowledge of hearing Elson say it. So far, all I've seen is quotes from other print sources, not first-hand evidence of anyone actually having heard that phrase.

BTW, when I published my Second String team on which Hoyt Wilhelm was mentioned, no one bothered to correct my calling it his traveling medicine show. This could show that some are being influenced by factors other than actual memory.

Nellie_Fox
08-29-2002, 11:19 AM
Originally posted by TornLabrum
My reference is first-hand knowledge of hearing Elson say it. So far, all I've seen is quotes from other print sources, not first-hand evidence of anyone actually having heard that phrase.
Once again, neither of us can prove it without having actual audio tape, but I must point out that I am your age (a little older, actually) and I am telling you that I heard it as "dancing medicine show." So I am a first-hand source, although I've admitted I can't remember if it was Elson or Brickhouse who used to say it.

What do you say that we agree this is unimportant and let it drop?

PaleHoseGeorge
08-29-2002, 11:28 AM
Originally posted by Nellie_Fox
Once again, neither of us can prove it without having actual audio tape, but I must point out that I am your age (a little older, actually) and I am telling you that I heard it as "dancing medicine show." So I am a first-hand source, although I've admitted I can't remember if it was Elson or Brickhouse who used to say it.

What do you say that we agree this is unimportant and let it drop?

Would this be a good time to note some folks on the email list have asked Hal about his in utero experiences?

:)

idseer
08-29-2002, 10:04 PM
for what it's worth, i clearly remember it as 'dancing medicine show' also. the fact that there 'is no such thing' means nothing. i could point out a thousand phrases announcers come up with that mean nothing.

TornLabrum
08-29-2002, 11:18 PM
Originally posted by idseer
for what it's worth, i clearly remember it as 'dancing medicine show' also. the fact that there 'is no such thing' means nothing. i could point out a thousand phrases announcers come up with that mean nothing.

Bob Elson was a very literate man, not given to non-sequiters. And can you be sure that your "memory" has not been influenced by recent "quotes" here.

Nellie_Fox
08-30-2002, 11:46 AM
Originally posted by TornLabrum
Bob Elson was a very literate man, not given to non-sequiters. And can you be sure that your "memory" has not been influenced by recent "quotes" here. Can you be sure that your memory has not been influenced by your insistence that the phrase should make sense?

I already told you that I'm more of a mind that it was Brickhouse that said it, not Elson, so his erudition is irrelevant. And don't tell me that a man who yelled "wheeeee" when someone hit a homer was too literate to say it.

TornLabrum
08-31-2002, 12:34 AM
Originally posted by Nellie_Fox
Can you be sure that your memory has not been influenced by your insistence that the phrase should make sense?

I already told you that I'm more of a mind that it was Brickhouse that said it, not Elson, so his erudition is irrelevant. And don't tell me that a man who yelled "wheeeee" when someone hit a homer was too literate to say it.

In answer to your question: Nope. I know what Elson said.

In answer to the rest:

1) I'm not remembering it after the posts here that way. Check out my column from a couple of years ago where I named my second string all-time team. I used the phrase then, not because it had to make sense to me but because that's what he said and that's how I remember it.

It was a phrase Elson used repeatedly. It was a phrase my dad constantly made fun of in Elson's own words.

The fact that I use Elson's literacy now has nothing to do with a column I wrote a couple of years ago.

2) You can't even remember who it was who said it. You think it was Brickhouse, and you are dead wrong. It was Elson. You are the only one so far to suggest it was anything else, and you invoke the name of Brickhouse (wrongly) as a counter-argument that Elson was to literate to use a non-sequiter like that. It seems like it's your memory that is sufject to outside influences, not mine.

BTW, I asked my mom if she remembered what Elson said, and I quoted both phrases. Her comment: "What's a dancing medicine show? They used to have traveling medicine shows. They'd set up on Broadway, and it seems like everyone in town was there."

As I said, the phrase "dancing medicine show" is meaningless, but Dr. Wilhelm the traveling purveyor of snake oil, fooling his "customers" with his "pitch"...that's very Elson-esque.

Nellie_Fox
08-31-2002, 12:56 AM
Okay, you "clearly" remember it one way. I "clearly" remember it another. One of us is wrong.

I teach (among other things) criminal investigation. Research has shown that eyewitness (or in this case, earwitness) testimony is extremely unreliable, even immediately after the fact. We are talking about something over thirty years old. Neither of our testimony is worth a tinker's damn, nor is your mother's.

Rich Lindberg (in his book "Who's On 3rd?") refers to the "dancing medicine show," but I guess that his 1983 book was influenced by the discussion on this thread.

idseer
08-31-2002, 10:17 AM
my closest freind growing up remembers it as 'dancing medicine show' too. certainly there must be some way of finding out. old radio tapes? is elson still alive? white sox radio archives?
tell me who to write to as i love digging up worthless information like this.

TornLabrum
08-31-2002, 12:02 PM
Originally posted by idseer
my closest freind growing up remembers it as 'dancing medicine show' too. certainly there must be some way of finding out. old radio tapes? is elson still alive? white sox radio archives?
tell me who to write to as i love digging up worthless information like this.

I was thinking old tapes, but I have no idea where to go. When Wilhelm was pitching the Sox were on either WCFL (early years) or WMAQ (late years). Both stations are defunct.

TornLabrum
08-31-2002, 12:05 PM
Originally posted by Nellie_Fox


Rich Lindberg (in his book "Who's On 3rd?") refers to the "dancing medicine show," but I guess that his 1983 book was influenced by the discussion on this thread.

No, but the discussion here was clearly influenced by Lindberg's book, which Lip cited as a source.

I was also thinking about the value of eyewitness testimony and agree. This will probably have to go unresolved since (as I pointed out before I remembered to expand the thread) I have no idea where you could find old audio tapes of Sox broadcasts...unless there would be some at the Chicago Museum of Broadcast History!

PaleHoseGeorge
08-31-2002, 02:05 PM
Originally posted by TornLabrum


No, but the discussion here was clearly influenced by Lindberg's book, which Lip cited as a source.

I was also thinking about the value of eyewitness testimony and agree. This will probably have to go unresolved since (as I pointed out before I remembered to expand the thread) I have no idea where you could find old audio tapes of Sox broadcasts...unless there would be some at the Chicago Museum of Broadcast History!

Is it possible Bob Elson used a mixed metaphor to highlight how Wilhelm's knuckleball pitch danced? I mean, it would hardly be unusual for somebody in baseball to be less than perfect in the language arts. Yogi Berra and Casey Stengel raised it to an art form.

We ought to get Lindberg to rule on this dispute as an expert authority.

TornLabrum
08-31-2002, 06:08 PM
Originally posted by PaleHoseGeorge


Is it possible Bob Elson used a mixed metaphor to highlight how Wilhelm's knuckleball pitch danced? I mean, it would hardly be unusual for somebody in baseball to be less than perfect in the language arts. Yogi Berra and Casey Stengel raised it to an art form.

We ought to get Lindberg to rule on this dispute as an expert authority.

Except it's Lindberg who started the whole "dancing medicine show" business to begin with! (See "Who's on Third?"

He did once admit to me he got the wrong number of "Go's" in the "Go You White Sox" jingle, though.

Nellie_Fox
09-01-2002, 02:30 AM
Originally posted by TornLabrum
Except it's Lindberg who started the whole "dancing medicine show" business to begin with! (See "Who's on Third?"
Not with me, he didn't. I remembered it the way I do before the thread started, before I read the article here on the board, and before I found the reference to it in "Who's On Third?".

CiscoCarlos
09-01-2002, 09:48 AM
Memories are tricky things--especially since Hoyt hasn't pitched for the Sox in 34 years. The definitive answer would come from Red Rush who lives in the Bay area. Does anyone have his e-mail address? I'll try redrush@aol.com, but that probably won't be it.

TornLabrum
09-01-2002, 11:12 AM
Originally posted by CiscoCarlos
Memories are tricky things--especially since Hoyt hasn't pitched for the Sox in 34 years. The definitive answer would come from Red Rush who lives in the Bay area. Does anyone have his e-mail address? I'll try redrush@aol.com, but that probably won't be it.

The truly definitive answer would come from a tape of a broadcast. The only place I know where that might be obtained would be at the Museum of Broadcasting in the old Chicago pulbic library building.

voodoochile
09-01-2002, 11:20 AM
Originally posted by TornLabrum
The truly definitive answer would come from a tape of a broadcast. The only place I know where that might be obtained would be at the Museum of Broadcasting in the old Chicago pulbic library building.

What about at Comiskey itself? There might be a tape available of old calls, or the WS press people might be able to answer the question. Has anyone written to the team and asked if they can give a definitive answer and proof?

Paulwny
09-01-2002, 12:38 PM
Originally posted by voodoochile
What about at Comiskey itself? There might be a tape available of old calls, or the WS press people might be able to answer the question. Has anyone written to the team and asked if they can give a definitive answer and proof?


Great Idea !!!!!!!!