Nebraska Minor League Baseball
Nebraska State League

Nebraska State League
Standings 1959
President: Mike Hollinger
Standings Win-- Loss-- GB--- Attendance Manager
McCook Braves (MIL) 43 19 - 19,788 Bill Steinecke
Holdrege White Sox (CHI) 39 23 4 11,963 Frank Parenti
Grand Island A's (KC) 32 30 11 16,716 Art Mazmanian
Kearney Yankees (NYY) 27 35 16 13,141 Jimmy Gleeson
Hastings Giants (SF) 23 39 20 10,235 Leo Schrall
North Platte Indians (CLE) 22 40 21 14,275 Mark Wylie

BA: Ike Futch, Kearney, .319
Runs: Frank Saia, McCook, 63
Hits: Woody Huyke, Hastings, 71
RBIs: Boyd Coffie, Kearney, 63
HRs: Woody Huyke, Hastings, 12
Wins: Anthony Filicchia, Grand Island, 11
SOs: Dennis Overby, McCook, 136
ERA: Paul Chenger, McCook, 2.13
Phil Niekro
McCook Braves 1959
(1966 Topps card)

Although this was to be the last year for the Nebraska State League and attendance was nothing to write home about in some ways it was the best year the league ever had. The McCook Braves were a team with a number of future major league stars and other teams had their quota of future major league players also. Lexington and Superior were dropped from the league and the remaining six teams played a 62 game schedule.

McCook under Bill Steinecke was loaded with talent. They split with Holdrege 6-6 during the year but won every other series. Holdrege also won every series but a game here and a game there resulted in them winding up in second place.

With future hall of fame pitcher Phil Niekro, future major league all star Ron Hunt and future long term Baltimore catcher Ellie Hendricks the Braves had quite a team for class "D". Paul Chenger led the Braves with a 10-1 record and William Stevens led the team with a .317 average.

In addition to these future major league stars, McCook had bonus baby Pat Jordan pitching for the Braves. He is best known for his sports memoir "A False Spring", a great baseball book about his experiences in the minor leagues. Future major league pitcher Bruce Brubaker joined Phil Niekro on the McCook staff.

Future major league all star Jose Santiago was a 19 year old pitcher with Grand Island in 1959 and Fred "Bubby" Talbot was a newly signed amateur free agent with the Holdrege White Sox. He had an 8 year major league career.

Holdrege also had Al Weis who led the NSL in assists in 1959 and made it to the majors with the Sox in 1962. Duke Sims caught for North Platte in 1959 and was promoted to the parent Indians in 1964.

The Kearney Yankees had future major league all star Jim Bouton on their roster. After an injury to his pitching thumb while with the Auburn Yankees in the NY-Penn League he was assigned to Kearney to finish the year.

McCook Braves 1959 Holdrege White Sox 1959
Grand Island A's 1959 Kearney Yankees 1959
Hastings Giants 1959 North Platte Indians 1959
Jose Santiago
Grand Island A's 1959
(1965 Topps Card)

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