Don Black Night Ticket Sales Soar

September 17, 1948

While Indians pitcher Don Black remains hospitalized at Charity Hospital in Cleveland while recuperating from a brain hemorrhage suffered during an at bat on Monday, the Cleveland Indians organization has reached out to help out their fallen player.

Friday morning, the Indians announced that Black would share in the receipts from the matchup between Cleveland and the Boston Red Sox in the first game of their series this coming Wednesday.

Wednesday’s ball game between the two has been switched to a night game to accommodate the larger-than-normal attendance. Cleveland Indians President Bill Veeck had to seek the permission of both the President of the American League, William Harridge, and the management of the Red Sox, to switch the game to an evening start.

Many tickets remain for the affair, but thousands of ticket requests have been made at the offices of the Cleveland Indians. The organization believes as many as 70,000 may be in attendance in a matchup of two teams in the thick of a pennant race.

If attendance reaches the mark that the ball club anticipates, Black and his family may receive between $30,000 and $40,000.

Veeck explained how the funds were going to be divided up. The Indians will keep their share of the estimated advanced sale of 25,000 tickets. All sales from the point of the announcement will go to Black.

Boston will not be asked to contribute its share.

The free gate pass list has been suspended for that ball game. Newspaper, radio, and television representatives have all volunteered to pay their way into the game so that their contributions would too go to Black.

“I wanted to do this in the game with the Red Sox,” said Veeck, “this way the fans will be donating to a worthy cause and get the finest attraction we have left.”

Bob Feller is in line to pitch Wednesday’s ball game and would need to win it and each of his three starts to follow to finish with 20 wins this season.

In July, the Indians did similar with an exhibition game against the Brooklyn Dodgers that saw more than 60,000 fans in attendance. The game produced nearly $80,000 in funds that were given to the Cleveland Baseball Federation for its sandlot fund.

Photo: Cleveland Memory Project

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