Pat Neubauer - Oldtimers Will Miss Him
By Frank Hyde
One night years ago, the Chicago Colored Stars touring baseball team was playing a local All-Star delegation at College Stadium. Satchel Paige, the old gentleman that time forgot, was featured by the Stars. The buildup had been terrific, based on the premise that Satch would pitch at least three innings. As the game wore on and no Satch, the fans grew restless for old "Rubber Arm" was the fellow they came to see. Sponsors of the game were huddled in an emergency meeting about the time this writer learned Satch was in a car in the parking lot chatting with a very attractive young lady.
We were talking with one of the sponsors near the turnstiles when the huge figure of Pat Neubauer, loomed up. "Let's go out and talk with him to see what he plans to do," we remarked to Pat. "Okay, let's go," the outspoken but friendly Neubauer replied. Satch, who was in uniform, appeared to be very happy right where he was. The debate went on for a few minutes then Pat, running out of patience, leaned inside the car window and spoke softly, nose-to-nose, with Satch. "Look, friend, I know these fellows (the sponsors). They're a tough bunch and if you don't get out there and toss a few, they'll refund the admission price and you and your team won't get a dime." It worked. Satch was on the mound a few moments later taking his warmups as a relief pitcher.
That's the Pat Neubauer we like to remember, a man who did much for baseball in Jamestown as a player, organizer and umpire, who was called recently by the Big Umpire up there. Pat's later baseball years were devoted pretty much to the Jamestown Old-timers and their annual benefit contests. He caught for the Falconer Milling team that played the Jamestown Steel Pratition Bombers in the state semi-pro tournament in 1947. The Bombers won but Pat always got a kick out of telling how close it was - Elly Norton climbing half way up the outfield fence to make a circus catch on Wayne Potwin's drive that would have meant victory.
Some of the fellows Pat played with in that era were Potwin, Ken Pabody, Vic Yanni, Eddie Faulk, Howie Miniger, Len Housler, Augie Bloomquist, Ray Macey, Eddie Hitchcock, Ollie Strickland, Dick Ringer, Harry Rissel, now better known for his achievements on the bowling lanes; Dick Wakefield, Dick Hallberg, most of them members of the old Moose team.
Another Neubauer story was about his biggest thrill that turned into somewhat of a letdown. "I was playing with the Robertson Clay team in Clearfield," he related. "I was at bat with runners on first and second when I got the signal to bunt to sacrifice the runners along. Well, in came that big, fat pitch and I couldn't help myself - I swung and hit a homer. But Manager Bob Wallace was so mad he pointed to the bench as I rounded third and yelled: "That’s where you'll be for the next three games."
Norman "Pat" Neubauer has been removed from the "lineup" but the local oldtimers who knew and respected him will remember the big, bluff, good-natured man for as long as they are around.