1948 December

2nd Stan Musial is picked MVP in the NL. Musial led the NL in batting at .365, runs (135), RBI (131), and in doubles and triples. His 39 HRs were one short of Mize and Kiner. According to research Bill Deane, Musial is the last NL player in the 20th C to bat .400 on the road (minimum 80 hits). He went 132-for-318 away from home, good for a .415 average. Other National Leaguers to top .400 on the road include Rogers Hornsby (.405 in 1920, .419 in 1921, .401 in 1928) and Bill Terry (.404 in 1930).

8th Pittsburgh trades 2B Frankie Gustine and P Cal McLish to the Cubs for P Cliff Chambers and C Clyde McCullough.

10th The minors started 58 leagues and 438 clubs this year. All the leagues finished schedules, but when the minor leagues ask for curbs on television into their areas, the ML clubs sidestep the issue.

13th After a year in New York, Red Embree is traded, along with young C Sherm Lollar, Dick Starr and $100,000, to the Browns. Embree will slump to 3–13 in St. Louis after having his only winning ML season in NY. Lollar is the prize, and will catch in the majors through 1963. The Yankees receive Fred Sanford and Roy Partee. Partee is ticketed for the minors, but Sanford will help the Yanks as a starter/reliever in 1949.

14th At the owners meetings two deals are announced. The Indians send Eddie Klieman, Eddie Robinson, and P Joe Haynes, acquired from the White Sox 3 weeks earlier for C Joe Tipton, to Washington for Early Wynn and Mickey Vernon. Vernon will go back to the Nats in 1950 but Wynn will stay in Cleveland for 9 seasons and 163 wins.

The Cubs send Eddie Waitkus and Hank Borowy to the Phillies in exchange for pitcher Monk Dubiel and Dutch Leonard. Leonard, the veteran knuckleballer, won 29 games in 2 years after being purchased from the Senators. He lost a NL high 17 games this year, despite a 2.51 ERA. Borowy slipped to 5-10 last year and Waitkus hit .296 in the PCL.

The AL and NL split on night games. The NL announces that teams can play 5 night games, up from 2, with each opponent.

15th The Dodgers trade Pete Reiser to the Braves for Mike McCormick. The marvelously talented but reckless Reiser crashed into too many outfield walls and, according to Red Smith, was carried off on a stretcher 11 times.

29th  The Sporting News names San Francisco’s (PCL) Gene Woodling the Minor League Player of the Year and names Oakland’s Casey Stengel as the Minor League Manager of the Year.