Nebraska Minor League Baseball
Team picture 1905
Western League Standings 1905
Standings Wins----- Losses--- GB
Des Moines Undertakers 95 52 --
Denver Grizzlies 94 59 4
Omaha Rourkes 86 62 9 ½
Sioux City Packers 80 69 16
Colorado Springs/Pueblo 52 93 42
St. Joseph Saints 37 109 57 ½

BA: Claude Rossman, Des Moines, .357
Hits: Claude Rossman, Des Moines, 229
Runs: George Hogriever, Des Moines, 122
HRs: Bill Shipke, Omaha, 10
Wins: Lefty Leifield, Des Moines, 26

Des Moines won the Western League in 1905 under the direction of club owner Joe Cantillion. In addition to owning the Des Moines team, Joe was also manager of the Milwaukee franchise in the American Association. He was able to acquire players as needed from the Miwaukee.

The Omaha Rourkes were able to overtake Sioux City to take third in the league.

FInancially, the Spalding guide indicated that Des Moines made $14,000 for the season. The guide estimated that Denver and Omaha turned a profit of $8,000 each while St. Joseph and Colorado Springs/Pueblo were big losers. Colorado Springs moved to Pueblo during the season and there were plans to build a new stadium in Pueblo for the 1906 season. The St. Joseph franchise was relocated to Lincoln Nebraska for the 1906 season. Long term major league player Ducky Holmes was the owner of the new franchise.


Harry Welsh played in 139 games and averaged .255 while tending the garden. He played in Omaha in 1903-1906 and 1909-1910.
Joe Dolan played in 130 games and averaged .245. He played 1st base for 45 games and 85 at short.
Eddie Quick was a 23 year old from Baltimore. He started his professional career in 1902 with Spokane. He played in one game for the Yankees in 1903. He was 18-18 as a pitcher and averaged .300 as a batter.
War Sanders was originally from Tennessee. He had a cup of coffee with the Cardinals in 1903 and 1904. He pitched in 16 games and had a 7-8 record in 1905. He was an Omaha regular from 1903-1910.
Paul Companion was 2-1 in 33 innings pitched.
Harry Freeze played in 58 games and averaged .216.
John McClosky ws 18-17 in 38 games. The 22 year old from Wyoming Pennsylvania made it to the major leagues in 1906. He had a cup of coffee with Philadelphia (NL) in 1906 and 1907.
Del Howard started the year with Pittsburg in the National League. He played 123 games for Pittsburg and 30 games for Pa Rourke. He averaged .265.
Knabe 93 games second
Glenn Leibhardt averaged .204 in 29 games. He made it to Cleveland in late 1906. He had an 18-14 record in 1907 in the majors and played through the 1909 season in the majors.
Robert Carter played in 135 games and averaged .252.
Bill "Muskrat" Shipke was a 22 year old from St. Louis. He played in 143 games and batted .262. He led the league in home runs with 10. He went Cleveland for a cup of coffee in 1906. He played for Cleveland and Washington during his four years in the majors. He settled in Omaha after his career and died in Omaha in 1940.
Otto Thiel was a 32 year old from Wisconsin. He played in 125 games and averaged .239 while tending the garden.
Johnny Gonding played in 109 games and averaged .215.
Jack Pfeister was 25-11 as a pitcher in 1905. He played in the majors from 1903-1904 and 1906-1911.
Marin played in 105 games and averaged .185.
John Bassey played in 15 games and had a .321 average.
Jack Thomas played in 85 games and averaged .222.

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