Beloit in Midwest for 1970 (1969)

From the Waterloo, Iowa, Daily Courier dated April 10, 1969, on page 26:


DECATUR, Ill. — Beloit, Wis. plans to play baseball in the Midwest League, reported league president Jim Doster here Thursday morning, but not until the 1970 season.

“The National Assn. met last week in Tampa, Fla.,” said Doster, “and advised us that the Midwest League should operate with nine clubs this year, since most farm directors had already disbanded and players have already been assigned.”

A report Wednesday said the city would field a team for the 1969 season, making the league a 10-team operation, but that report was incorrect.

“We first went to Dubuque,” said Doster, “but we got a cool reception there about putting a tenth team in. Rockford, Ill. was our next choice, but we found commitments had already been made there for the baseball stadium.

“Then Mike Kelegian of Rockford went to Beloit and found them interested,” Doster added. “The have a stadium two years old which seats 3,000.

“I have now invited Mike Kelegian to the meeting of our board of directors April 20 in Davenport. If the directors so desire, he can make formal application for 1970.”

The odd abbreviations are in the article. I’m pretty sure Jim Doster didn’t actually speak that way.

The “Wednesday” report cited above was surprisingly specific: The team name was going to be the Braves, the 1969 affiliation would be a Tigers-dominated co-op, the 1970 affiliation would be with Cleveland, and Kelegian would likely move the team to Rockford for the 1970 season. None of these things happened.

The June 23 Burlington Hawk-Eye reported progress on the Beloit grandstand for the 1970 season, as did the July 12 Madison Capital Times.

Danville would (re)join the Midwest League as its tenth team for the 1970 season. Beloit and Rockford would both eventually join the league–Beloit in 1982, and Rockford in 1988.

And people wonder why I’m generally skeptical about franchise move reports.

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