Baseball player Heinie Groh, New York Giants third baseman, standing on the field at Weeghman Field prior to game vs Cubs 1922 Photo SUMMARY
Informal three-quarter length portrait of baseball player Heinie Groh, of the National League's New York Giants, standing on the field at Weeghman Field (later renamed Wrigley Field), located at 1060 West Addison Street and bounded by West Waveland Avenue, North Seminary Avenue, North Clark Street, and North Sheffield Avenue in the Lake View community area of Chicago, Illinois. An unidentified New York player is standing in the background with his back to the camera. SDN-063546, Chicago Daily News negatives collection, Chicago Historical Society.
Although small in size, 5 ft 8 inches, 158-pounds Heinie Groh left his mark among the ‘big guys’ during a 16-year major league career, that spanned the dead ball era and the juiced up modern ball era. Using a bottle bat shaped with an unusually thick handle (like an old-fashioned milk bottle) Heinie Groh compiled a very solid .292 lifetime batting mark.
He cut and sanded the bat handle down some in order to swing faster. Groh often said, ‘you couldn’t hold that bottle bat down at the knob end because the way the weight was distributed the ball would knock it right out of your hands. But I always chocked up and chopped at the ball.’ Note: quite a few ball players used bottle bats during the dead ball era because the baseball was heavier in weight and slightly larger in size.
A leading defensive shortstop of this era Heine Groh played on 5 pennant winning teams, including the 1919 Cincinnati Reds who defeated the team that threw the 1919 World Series, the Chicago Black Sox.