mad in pursuit journal


Rip CollinsThe 2 Rips (Or, Google Doesn't Know Everything)

And apparently neither do I -- especially not about baseball history. But let this be a lesson to me...

Tom gave me this to sell. Photo postcard from about 1930. The handwriting is unauthenticated, but the autograph appears to be done by a real fountain pen, not printed with the photo; the inscription obviously added later.

Google: Rip Collins was the Rochester Red Wings all-time batting champ, playing for them, 1928-1930. End of story. No record of him moving on to the Majors.

But most of the Google entries were about another Rip Collins (Harry Warren Collins), who played for the St Louis Browns* in 1931 and had a long career in association with the Detroit Tigers. What the...?

Who's faking us out? And could the faker be even dumber than me about the two Rips? Who would take a photo of a Minor League Player and inscribe it as if he were the Browns' Rip?

I was in the middle of explaining this in an email to Tom when I thought I'd check ebay records. I can't remember why... Anyway up pops a 1930s card of our Rip -- in a Cardinals uniform! Huh?

So... Who played in the 1931 World Series? St Louis Cardinals vs Philadelphia Athletes.

Who was on the team? Ripper Collins. Ripper?

Google Ripper Collins. Oh here he is! And here.

My brother probably knew all this. It was the "..." in our conversation. Who from St Louis would not automatically know that the Cardinals were the champions of 1931 and that Rip, Ripper (whatever) Collins was a power-hitter on the famous Gashouse Gang?


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* I know the Red Wings was once a farm team for the St Louis Cardinals. But the St Louis Browns moved to Baltimore to become the Baltimore Orioles and the Red Wings are now their farm team. History bobs and weaves.

Next question: Is the autograph we have consistent with the two other autographs we found? They aren't inconsistent, esp. if you can buy my theory that it is more natural to sign a baseball with a backhand slant.


Rip Collins, Cardinals

Signed baseball:

Rip Collins baseball