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Omaha Packers

From BR Bullpen

In 1930 the former Omaha Crickets of the Western League became the Omaha Packers. After a strong start in their debut season, the club from Omaha, NE slipped to second with a 76-66 record, 11 and a half games behind the Wichita Aviators. 3B Clarence Heatherly (.286, 33 SB) an 2B Joe Faber (.281, 77 RBI) made the league All-Star team. Pitcher Carl Dunagan was fifth in the circuit in ERA and tied for third in wins (18-11, 3.54) and also homered from both sides of the plate in one game.

The Packers did not fare as well in 1931, finishing 7th of 8 teams in the first half at 29-38 and then doing worse in the second half, with a 20-59 record to give them 97 losses against just 49 wins. After starting the 1932 season with a decent first half (36-37) the club again was last in the second half, with a 22-51 record. The club again lacked an All-Star or a leader in a key category. Former big-leaguer Eddie Brown (.352) was fifth in the WL in average and hits (204) and third in doubles (52) and outfield fielding percentage (.983).

Omaha was much more competitive in 1933, going 63-61. 3B Stanley Tutaj (.368) made the All-Star team and had the second-best average in the circuit. Sam Dailey (20-9) was tied for third in the league in wins and struck out 155, 4th in the WL.

The Packers slipped in 1934, going 49-73 overall. The club drew 34,675 fans and had two All-Stars - 1B Malcolm Pickett (.312, tied for 4th in the league with 15 HR) and OF Albert McNeely (5th with a .326 average, third with 92 runs and tied for the league lead with 37 doubles).

Omaha's rocky run continued in 1935 as the Packers packed up and moved to Council Bluffs, IA on June 25 where they became the Council Bluffs Rails. That ended a 35-year presence of Omaha teams in the Western League.

Source: "The Western League" by W.C. Madden and Patrick Stewart

Year-by-Year Record[edit]

Year Record Finish Manager Playoffs
1930 76-66 2nd Spencer Abbott none
1931 49-97 8th H.C. "Doc" Smith / Pug Griffin
1932 58-88 8th Pug Griffin / Eddie Brown
1933 63-61 5th Pug Griffin
1934 49-73 7th Frank "Dutch" Wetzel / Malcolm Pickett
1935 22-15 -- Joe McDermott -- Team moved to Council Bluffs (33-31) June 25