A’s to wear 1914 throwback jerseys Saturday (and a brief Athletics history lesson)

athletics-throwback-jerseysAccording to the A’s Twitter account the A’s will be wearing 1914 throwback jerseys Saturday when they play the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field to commemorate the 1914 World Series in which the “Miracle Braves” (they were the Boston Braves at the time, moved to Milwaukee in the early 50’s and to Atlanta in the 60’s) swept the thought to be unbeatable Philadelphia Athletics. Personally, I love the old uni’s. Sure they are a bit bland but the classic stirrup socks always get me! I am the socks girl after all! Plus, the history of the A’s back in Philly around that time was interesting and rich.

Back in 1914, actually since 1901, the A’s played in Shibe Park in Philadelphia. At one point the Phillies also played there and it was later renamed Connie Mack Stadium after the man who owned and managed the Athletics for literally half a decade! The A’s won the AL Pennant in 1910, 1911, 1913, 1914 – they won three of the four World Series. Their infield was called the “$100,000 infield” and it was also the era that the Elephant became the Athletics’ mascot. The owner of the Giants called the A’s the “white elephants” and Mack embraced it instead of rejecting the idea which I love because today we have Stomper! 🙂

Shibe Park

1914 was the year Connie Mack decided to sell off his great players and the A’s didn’t win another World Series until 1929 and again in 1930 – on those Championship teams were Hall of Famers like Frank “Home Run ” Baker who played third in the “$100,000 infield,” Chief Bender and in the later years Lefty Grove and Jimmie Foxx. The 1929-1930 A’s have been said to have been as good as the 1927 Yankees with their Murderers Row who are considered by most to be the best team of all time.

The rest us Oakland fans know. The A’s had a drought for 40 years and moved to Kansas City in 1955 and to Oakland in 1968. In Oakland the A’s went on to win three straight World Series in 1972, 1973, 1974. These teams included Hall of Famers such as Rollie Fingers, Catfish and Reggie Jackson.
bbThey appeared in three more between 1988-1990 but only one once, sweeping the Giants in the famous “Battle of the Bay,” when the series was rocked by an earthquake so large that is suspended play for 11 days. Those clubs too had Hall of Famers Dennis Eckersley and Rickey Henderson

What more there is to tell is relatively recent. The A’s have been to the playoffs in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2006, 2012 and 2013. The only time they made it past the American League Division Series was in 2006. They then lost the AL Championship Series to the Detroit Tigers and have lost their other two most recent playoff appearances to the Tigers as well.

The A’s are hoping to make a run for the World Series this year under general manager Billy Beane and manager Bob Melvin. They have had the best record in baseball since June 18 but the Los Angeles Angels are creeping on them … the A’s need to step it up. It would be complete destiny for them to bring home a championship exactly 25 years since their last one.

*Here is a little more in-depth A’s history if you are interested:

The Athletics: Baseball’s Best Forgotten Franchise

History of Shibe Park

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