Monday, June 22, 2015

Jim Finigan and the Trade That Wasn't

By the time 1958 came around, Jim Finigan was a bench player looking for a team that could use him.

The infielder spent most of that season in the Giants' Phoenix minor league club, then was dealt to the Orioles in the dreaded "Unknown Transaction".

In doing some searching, I found excerpts from the book The Cardinals Encyclopedia... which had the following trade listed for Oct. 14, 1958:

"(Cardinals traded) Infielder Jim Finigan to the Baltimore Orioles for shortstop Jim Brideweser and pitcher Art Ceccarelli,"

What?

I can find nothing that has Finigan in the Cardinals system....Ceccarelli never played for the Cards and neither did Brideweser until 1961.

I also found this article from the Breckenridge (TX) American of Oct. 15, 1958...

"The Baltimore Orioles have purchased infielder Jim Finigan from the Vancouver farm club..."

Okay...

Now, Brideweser DID go from Vancouver in 1958 to Phoenix in 1959, so there could have been a one-for-one there...

Found it! The News from Frederick, Maryland of Oct. 14, 1958...

"Vancouver obtained Finigan from Phoenix last week in a trade for infielder Jim Brideweser and pitcher Art Ceccarelli"

So the Cardinals weren't involved at all! Ceccarelli was taken by the Cubs from the Orioles in the Rule V draft just two months later, so there is still a mystery there...but we have solved a real unknown transaction, and corrected an error in the process!


Finigan and Brideweser pics lifted from eBay. 

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