Today’s post features the 1961 Duluth Dukes who wore the jersey below; which you can purchase here.
I was doing some MiLB research; it’s hard to find information, photos, etc. on the lesser known MiLB teams. Yes, you can find the stats at baseball reference, but this isn’t a stats blog. I originally wanted to write today about a team from the Michigan State League. It only seemed fitting since the title of this blog is Greetings From Michigan. Eventually, I stumbled on the Duluth Dukes, and they intrigued me immediately.
On this particular jersey, the side patch caught my eye. The Top Hat with the eyeglass, that’s a cool little patch. MiLB teams have so many different names and mascots and logos its always refreshing to see something different and unique like that little patch.
Here’s a photo of Bernie Gul playing for them in ’52:
The Duluth Dukes played in the Northern League from 1935 to 1942, and then from 1946 until 1955. Additionally, they were a part of the short-lived (it only lasted six weeks) Twin Ports League. In 1956, they merged with the Superior Blues and played as the Duluth-Superior White Sox until 1960 when the Dukes Moniker was restored.
The Duluth-Superior Dukes were an affiliate of the Tigers from 1960-1964, in ’65, they were affiliated with both the Tigers and White Sox. ’66 saw an affiliate with the Cubs. In 1967, they had affiliations with two teams again (the Cubs and White Sox). Their final years (’68-’70) saw them affiliated with the White Sox.
Notable alumni of the Dukes include Detroit Tigers Center Fielder Mickey Stanley. Here he is in ’68 with the Tigers
He played all fifteen seasons with the Tigers batting .248 with 117 home runs and 500 RBIs where he was a four-time golden glove winner and was a part of the 1968 Tigers World Series. Stanley hit .259 that season while winning the first of three consecutive Gold Gloves. Late in the season Stanley switched positions to play shortstop (he had never done that before in organized baseball) and became an integral part of the Tigers World Series Win.