Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Howie Judson, Bubba Church and Ed Winceniak

Howie Judson was a pretty fair pitcher in the late forties thru the early fifties that came out on the unlucky side more often than not in the majors. His 1-14 mark for the White Sox in 1949 came with a 4.58 ERA and a team that lost 91 games.

Judson, a former Fighting Illini, went to the Reds in 1953, and despite a pretty fair 1954, was sent to the minors never to return.

His Baseball Reference minor league page has him playing for independent Seattle in 1955.

“{Yesterday} The Cincinnati Redlegs sold Pitcher Howie Judson to Seattle of the Pacific Coast League.”

During 1957, Judson headed East and South, to the Miami Marlins.

From the book "The Forgotten Marlins: A Tribute to the 1956-1960 Original Miami Marlins" by Sam Zygner:

“Four ex-major leaguers were acquired on June 12 and 13….and Howie Judson and Bubba Church were purchased from Seattle of the Pacific Coast League.”

Judson took his time getting there according to the June 21, 1957 Miami Sunday News... 

“Judson supposedly left Seattle June 11 for Miami. As yet, he is among the missing.”

This would also put the transaction as June 11, 1957.

In the off-season, Judson went back west, to the Cubs' Portland AAA team. 
Haven't come up with the actual transaction data, but it had to occur between the end of the 1957 playoffs and this note from the Feb. 26, 1958 Spokane Daily Chronicle:

“Pitcher Howie Judson and first baseman Bruce M’intosh have signed their contracts with the Portland Beavers baseball team.”

By the way, that is exactly how McIntosh was spelled in the article. He was a career minor leaguer who never played for Portland.

Judson had one more stop to make, independent Denver in 1959. From the Twin Falls Daily News of Thursday. Dec. 4, 1958..

“WASHINGTON, Dec. 4 —The Denver club of the American Association on Wednesday purchased shortstop Ed Winceniak and pitcher Howie Judson from Portland of the Pacific Coast league.”

Judson, who was gradually losing his sight, finished that year at Denver,

Odds and ends: Church's deal above was odd since he had sat out a full season after the Cubs sold him to Sacramento. The Winceniak deal above was also not previously listed on his Baseball Reference page.

Judson and Church from
Winceniak from Amazon


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