Nebraska Minor League Baseball
Western League Standings 1924
President: Albert Tearney
Standings Wins----- Losses--- GB

Omaha Buffaloes 103 61 --
Denver Bears 100 67 4 ½
Tulsa Oilers 98 69 6 ½
St. Joseph Saints 86 79 17 ½
Oklahoma City Indians 82 86 23
Wichita Izzies 79 88 25 ½
Des Moines Boosters 59 106 44 ½
Lincoln Links 57 108 46 ½

SO's: Bill Bailey, Omaha, 191

Lincoln returned to the Western League after a two year stint in the Nebraska State League. The owner of the class "D" franchise, Buck Beltzer, was locked out of both the new Western League franchise and the Tri-State League follow on to the Nebraska State League.

The Burch Rods were unstoppable as they ran through the rest of the league with superior pitching, batting and fielding. Manager for the Rod's was Art Griggs. The Topeka native started his career in the Southern Association with Little Rock. He also starred as a football player at the University of Kansas. In 1907 he moved from pitcher to first base and his career began to blossom. After spending 1907 and 1908 in San Antonio, he made his major league debut with the St. Louis Browns in May of 1909. He played for St. Louis and Cleveland in the American League, the Brooklyn Tip Tops in the Federal League and finished his major league career with Detroit in the American League. He played at Vernon, Sacramento and Los Angeles in the PCL before moving to Omaha as manager for the 1924 season. He also played in 87 games and averaged .287. He returned as manager for 1925 then moved to the PCL for 1926. He was back as a manager in the Western League with Wichita from 1928-1931 then with Tulsa in the Texas League 1932-33 and 1935. Griggs was replaced by Cullop after Griggs was hit in the face by a pitch during mid season.

On August 12th Barney's boys had four double plays all via the same route. Third baseman Jimmy Wilcox started all four, throwing to Fresco Thompson covering second and on to first where Nick Cullop held the bag.

Henry "Nick" "Tomato Face" Cullop alternated between first base and the outfield in 1924. Nick, who was born in Weldon Springs Missouri, started as a pitcher with Madison in the South Dakota League in 1920 where he hit .341 in 66 games. In 1924 he had 40 home runs and 155 RBI's for Omaha. After his stint in Omaha he moved to Atlanta in the Southern Association for 1925. He hit .310 and led the league in homers which led to a tryout with the Yankees. He played most of the 1926 season in St. Paul. 1927 was spent in the major leagues with Washington and Cleveland. Atlanta again in 1928, then the Dodgers, then Atlanta then Minneapolis. He then played for five years in Columbus then two in Sacramento and two in Houston. He then managed at Asheville, Pocatello, Columkbus, Milwaukee, Baltimore and Kansas City. He retired after the 1959 season. In his 24 year playing career he had 523 doubles, 147 triples and 420 home runs putting him in an elite group of players for career extra base hits.

Joe John Bonowitz returned to play for Omaha in 1924. He averaged .320 in 166 games. He moved to Shreveport in the Texas League for the 1925 season. He started his career with St. Joseph in 1918 and moved to Omaha for 1923 and 1924. He played in the Texas league for six years and three more in the Southern Association. He bounced from the NY-Penn league to the Piedmont league and wound up his career in 1936 with Chattanooga.

Fresco "Tommy" "Grand Island" Thompson had played for Grand Island in the Nebraska State League in 1922. After the 1924 season, the Centreville Alabama native was sold to Pittsburg for a pitcher named Stone and cash. Pittsburg then assigned him to Tulsa. He had a nine year major league career.

Roy Luebbe was a promising young catcher from the Omaha sandlots. Originally from Parkersburg Iowa the 6 ft. tall catcher was played briefly with Omaha in 1921. He played for Waterloo in the Mississippi Valley League in 1922, the Scranton and finally with Grand Island in the Nebraska State League. He barely made the Mendoza line with Grand Island. After the Grand Island franchise folded in 1924 Barney still owned his contract. After failing to sell his contract he gave Roy a chance and Roy responded by hitting .370. Barney sold him to the Yankees near the end of the 1925 season. He played in eight games with the New York Yankees. He died in 1985 in Papillion Nebraska.

Bill Bailey led the league with 191 strike outs in 1924. He had a 23-16 record for the year.

Louie Koupal was another Nebraska State League graduate. Louis played for Hastings in 1922. Louie was 22-10 for the year. The Tabor South Dakota native was also sold to Pittsburg by Barney at the end of the year. Louie had a six year major league career with four different teams.

Frank "Stubby" Mack was 16-11 for Omaha in 1924. Originally from Oklahoma City Oklahoma, Stubby had a cup of coffee with the Chicago White Sox in 1922 and 1923. He also appeared in 8 games in 1925 with the White Sox.

Harry Lee was 25-11.

Nebraska Minor League Baseball Home