John Holway / Other Leagues (Ladies Leagues)
MY OLD PAL, ZIGGY
By John B. Holway
Alma Ziegler, or "Gabby," was one of the best ballplayers in the league. A 20-game winner, an all-star second baseman, and a team leader. She stood about five feet tall and weighed 120, but hitting her weight was difficult. She always seemd to pick a bat with a hole in it.
Our coach, Johnny Rawlings [formerly with the NY Giants] came up with a brilliant idea. "Ziggy," he said, and shoved his hat back on his silver-white head, you're a pretty good bunter, so here's what we're gonna do." He always talked out of the corner of his mouth like he was telling a secret, and we all strained forward to hear him. He tapped Ziggy on the emblem and said, "You're gonna square around and fake a bunt. You'll pull the infield in, then take a half-swing and slap it over their heads."
Well, Ziggy practiced for two hours.
Comes the game that night. Bottom of the ninth, two outs, runners on second and third. We needed a hit to tie it. She faked the bunt, the fielders came in, and the next pitch she hit the longest ball she ever hit in her life to the leftfield wall for out number-three.
Whenever John was flabbergasted, he would turn his hat sidewise, say, "Holy suffering jumped up Jesus Christ!" and do a stiff pratfall flat on his back, hard. Well, John did his flip, and when Zig saw that, she didn't even come back to the bench, she took off straight for the clubhouse. She remembers that to this day.
/// Anyone interested in interviewing more All American Girls, please get in touch with me at jholway@Erols.com. Maybe we can put a book together.///