|Current Duncan Field
Photo courtesy of Eliza Portrait Design
The Nebraska State League, which had managed to survive most of the depression before collapsing during WWII, was revived in 1956 as a class "D" rookie league. The league was owned by Major League Baseball and featured eight teams at its start. The league scheduled 63 games from July to Labor Day. The Hastings Giants were a farm team of the New York/San Francisco Giants.
With a metro population of about 20,000, Hastings sold 632 season tickets for the 1956 season. The team played at Duncan Field. That field along with Memorial Field in Kearney were the best fields in the league. The Hastings Giants for 1956 did not live up to fans expectations and finished in last place, 26 games out of first.
For 1957 the Hastings Giants had a new manager in Leo Schrall and a better finish as they wound up with a winning record, only 4 games out of first.
Leo Schrall was not able to improve the Giants in 1958 as they wound up in seventh place in 1958. The major league club moved from New York to San Francisco and Hastings was now a farm club of the San Francisco Giants. Even though they were the second largest city in the league they were seventh in attendance in 1958. The Hastings Giants were 24-39 for the season and wound up 17 games out of first.
With Superior and Lexington dropping out of the league in 1959 the Nebraska State League was left with only six teams. The 1959 Hastings Giants wound up once again next to last in the standings and last in attendance. Woody Huyke did lead the league in home runs and hits for the San Francisco farm team.
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