Pandemic Baseball, Sign stealing

Ty Cobb Was A Fan Of The Best Newspaper In The West

In lieu of actual baseball, I’ll be posting snippets that were cut from The Baseball Codes as a way of amusing myself and, hopefully, you. The theme this week: Sign stealing from beyond stadium boundaries, pre-Astros era.

In a 1952 article in Life Magazine, Ty Cobb admitted that the upper and lower halves of the “B” in a Tiger Stadium advertisement reading, “THE DETROIT NEWS: BEST NEWSPAPER IN THE WEST,” would alternately open and close, depending on what showed up in the binoculars of an scoreboard spy, whose lenses were strong enough, he said, “to bring out the fillings in the catcher’s teeth.”

“I don’t know whether the ad sold any newspapers,” Cobb added, “but it was a great thing for the Detroit batting averages.”

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