The night in 1956 when Don Grate broke his own record for the longest throw of a baseball (as detailed here) was “Appreciation Night” for his team, the Minneapolis Millers, of the Class AAA American Association. Each of the Millers was presented a gift, all of which were mentioned in the next morning’s Minneapolis Tribune. And so a record can exist forever on the interwebs, here is what each man received (stats are BA-HR-RBI for players, W-L, ERA for pitchers):
Eddie Stanky (in his only season as a minor league manager): $25 gift certificate at Liemandt’s from Tom Sawyer Meats; box of fishing plugs from Jack Riehl.
Ramon Monzant (0-1, 5.62): $25 gift certificate at Anthonie’s from Ohleen Dairy.
Curt Barclay (15-11, 4.11): Clock radio from Teamsters Union Joint Council.
Bill Taylor (.309-19-69): $25 gift certificate at Corrie’s from Schweigert Meats.
Pete Burnside (5-9, 4.62): Electric razor from Les Fitting’s Dollar Store; sport shirt from Lowe and Campbell Sporting Goods.
Willie Kirkland (.293-37-120): $25 from Minneapolis Police Department; cuff links and tie clasp from LeRoy Jewelry.
Don Grate (.316-4-36): Slacks from Rothchild’s; walking shorts from Arthur Koritz Custom Tailors.
Mel Held (6-3, 5.52): $25 gift certificate from Cortland Jewelers.
Phil Paine (8-6, 3.49): $15 gift certificate from Carr’s; slacks from Herman Gliem.
Al Corwin (6-8, 4.50): $25 check from Zurah Temple; dozen golf balls from Abe Weisman.
Gail Harris (.270-24-82): Pipe, tobacco and cleaners from Billy and Marty’s; rod and reel from Coast to Coast Stores.
Roger Bowman (2-2, 3.07 at Minneapolis): Fishing rod from Jack Riehl; sleeping bag from Larson-Olson Sporting Goods.
Ozzie Virgil (.265-10-67): Electric frying pan from Teamsters Local 792.
Lee Tate (.255-3-25): $20 gift certificate at Florsheim Shoes from Minneapolis Elks Club; sport shirt from Harold LaRue.
Gil Coan (.286-12-54): $25 check from Minneapolis Fire Department.
Tom McKenna (trainer): $25 check from Laidlaw American Legion post; season pass from Alvin Theater.
Art Ruane (?): Electric cup heater [I hope for a drinking cup!] from Crabtree Tobacco Co.; sport shirt from Corrie’s Sporting Goods; ice bucket from Len Freeman.
Rosy Ryan (general manager): $25 gift certificate at Anthonie’s from Fisher Nut Co.; two cartons of cigarets [sic] from Billy and Marty’s.
Chet Roan (Metropolitan Stadium manager): Combination overnight case and brief case from Crane’s store on the University of Minnesota campus.
George Arneson (?): slacks at Rothschild’s from Bill Boyer and Fremont Mitchell; evening for two from Murray’s.
Pat Smith (?): Carving set from Washburn-McReavy mortuary [kind of a disturbing combination, no?].
George Brophy (Millers front office, succeeded Ryan as general manager): Steam iron from Charles Appliance.
Marge Hoppe (?): $10 gift certificate from Peterson Florists.
Dick Ericson (groundskeeper): Camp cooler from S and M Co.; sport short from Bond’s; package sent out by admirer [inquiring minds want to know].
Paul Gebhart (?): Two ties from Hubert White; automobile tissue dispenser from Warren Cadillac.
Joe Duffy (stadium management): Champagne from Snyder’s Liquor store.
All Millers: Free car wash from Jiffy Car Wash in St. Louis Park.
By the way, $25 in 1956 was worth about $200 in today’s dollars.