June 8, 1919 - Is there anything better than a nice Sunday summer afternoon at the ballpark?
The baseball fans of Buffalo finally got a chance to find out on this day. The Bisons played their first-ever Sunday game at Franklin Park. The novelty didn't play well at first, as only 2,500 turned out for the game.
The Sunday games apparently became part of the schedule. Here's what the Buffalo Courier said about the first few contests on that day of the way, courtesy of the Bisons' website:
"The crowds at Franklin Park have been orderly the past two Sundays, and only on one or two occasions did anyone forget and coach louder than was necessary. A few women have been in attendance and two well-dressed Chinamen were observed behind the catcher last Sunday. Several clergymen were present and one observed, 'I would rather the men would congregate in the ball park than spend their time in the saloons.' "
That Buffalo team finished 81-67, good for third place in the International League. Also in the IL that year were the Reading Coal Barons and Rochester Hustlers.
That Bisons squad had Bucky Harris as its second baseman. It was his last year as a player, but he stayed in the game. Harris managed 29 seasons in the majors, and even spent two others guiding Buffalo's fortunes (1944 and 1945).
--- Budd Bailey