Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 2, Number 1, January, 1992 Page: 9
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Home Games Tuesday and Friday Nights: Five Years of the Herder Truckers
from a Sunday afternoon local team to a full-fledged semipro team, for Winters, who had
been hired as a Weimar High School coach the preceding summer, Frank Kana, and his
brother Jiggs, were the only local men who played major roles for Charlie Herder's team
on the field that season. Johnny Miksch continued as manager and he and Al Kasparek
got into a game or two, but for the most part, the team relied on "imported" players.
Fortunately for the Truckers, those players were of the highest quality. The University
of Texas won the first of two straight national championships in 1949 and Wall was
named to the All America team.
The night after their opener, the potent Truckers beat the Wildcats again, this
time in Conroe, 5-3. The game matched Wall, who got the win, and Gorin. The little
left hander struck out fifteen Weimar batters and allowed just three hits, but lost because
of three unearned runs. The Truckers followed with impressive victories over the Vic-
toria Rosebuds and former major league pitcher Dick Mulligan on June 3 and the Seguin
White Sox on June 5, then beat the Sinton Plymouth Oilers for their fifth straight victory.
Significantly, a different pitcher got the win in each game; Ehrler against Victoria, Kas-
parek against Seguin, and Womack against Sinton.
Then it was back to Conroe, where the Wildcats and Gorin hung the Truckers
with their first loss. Segrist hit a three run homer in the bottom of the eighth to break
up a 2-2 tie and beat Ehrler. The Truckers then ran off four more victories, the final one,
on June 14, a thrilling 5-4 decision over Conroe in which they scored one run in the eighth
and four in the bottom of the ninth.
The College World Series, played that year for the last time in Wichita,
Kansas, briefly interrupted the season, forcing the Truckers to suspend all games until
June 28. The bulk of the team, of course, went to Wichita to play for the Longhorns
and emerged with the national title. Two months later, they would be back in Wichita,
representing the little town of Weimar.
When the Truckers resumed play, they lost two straight magnificent pitching
duels to Conroe. On June 28 in Weimar, Gorin bested Jiggs Kana, 2-0, striking out
fourteen and not walking a batter. The next day in Conroe, Wall gave up a run in the
bottom of the ninth to lose, 1-0. Mulligan and his Victoria Rosebuds then beat Ehrler
and the Truckers by the same score to give the Weimar team a three game losing streak.
But the Truckers then caught fire, winning 33 of their next 36 games and 39 of 44 games
to close the season.
At one point, Brock homered in three straight games. And if it was not Brock,
it was Kneuper. One night, Ehrler struck out fifteen. Another, Wall fanned twelve. On
July 10, Winters was hit by a pitch and left the game. Miksch came in to catch and had
two hits. Once against Conroe, Ehrler walked ten batters, but the Truckers won anyway,
as Kneuper hit a home run and drove in six runs. Left handed hurler Jimmy Hand joined
the team and pitched consecutive victories, five days apart, over the Baytown Oilers.
In the second game, Kneuper was five for five.
On July 19, the largest crowd in Weimar baseball history to that time saw
the Truckers meet Conroe at Veterans Park. Before the game, there was a celebration
of the Texas Longhorns' national championship. Originally, Governor Beauford Jester
was to attend, but he died on July 11 and Alan Shivers, who succeeded him, was too
busy to come. Texas Coach Bibb Falk and The Houston Post's Morris Frank, who served
as master of ceremonies, were on hand, along with the parents of several of the players.
Conroe's Hamilton and Herder's Wall and Kneuper each received awards for their
performances in Wichita. The game was something of an anti-climax. The Truckers won
easily, 8-0, as Wall pitched a five-hitter. Conroe manager Ty Cobb, despite a heart attack
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Nesbitt Memorial Library. Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 2, Number 1, January, 1992, periodical, January 1992; Columbus, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth151384/m1/9/?q=nesbitt%20memorial%20library%20journal: accessed May 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Nesbitt Memorial Library.