Nebraska Minor League Baseball
Byron Speece

By Speece was a 5'11" tall right handed pitcher. Born in West Baden Indiana he made his professional baseball debut with the Norfolk Elkhorns in the Nebraska State League in 1922. His 14-9 record helped Norfork capture the 1922 regular season pennant.

At the end of the season, Barney Burch owner of the Omaha Buffaloes in the Western League bought his contract. In 1923 he pitched for Omaha. He was Omaha's leading pitcher with 26 wins. He pitched 314 innings and had 129 strike outs. On May 2nd he set a Western League record for a pitcher by hitting two home runs in one game. He also had a double and pitched a 5 hit victory over Tulsa. After one year in Omaha Barney sold Speece to the Washington Senators for $15,000.

Speece pitched one year for Washington, two years for Cleveland and one year for Philadelphia (NL) franchise. He had a lifetime record of 5 wins and six losses over four years, pitching 167 big league innings.

In 1932 he started a six year run with the Nashville Vols. Playing in Sulpher Dells he managed a 9-6 record in 1932. In 1933 he was a regular in the rotation and had a 17-10 record in 33 games. In 1935 he was 15-12 in 38 games and in 1936 he led the team and the league with a 22-9 record. 1937 was not as good for By as he had his first losing record for the Vols with a 10-15 record and in 1938 he pitched in less than 45 innings for the Vols.

He played semi-pro ball in 1939 and was picked up by Portland in the Pacific Coast League for the 1940 season. He was 7-9 in 1940, 9-12 in 41 and 9-6 in 1942. He moved to Seattle and played there for the next three years managing a 13-9 record in 1943 and a 2.80 ERA as a 45 year old pitcher in 1944.

He died in Oregon in 1974.

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