Baseball Almanac likes to take a look "beyond the stats" and we hope you enjoy the following Bucky Veil chronology created by his grandson Fred Veil:
Bucky Veil Makes The Team
Bucky Veil was one of five rookie pitchers the Pirates took to Spring Training in Hot Springs, AK in March, 1903 to try out for the team. With the departure of veteran pitchers Tannehill and Chesbro, there was opportunity for two or more of these newcomers to secure a position on the pitching staff, if not in the starting rotation. Although used sparingly, Veil pitched reasonably well when given the chance. He won the first major league game he pitched, a 6-4 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on April 19th. His 3-2 victory over that same team on June 1st caused the Cincinnati Commercial to opine that "If Pitcher Veil can do the kind of work against all teams that he did against the Reds Sunday, then Barney Dreyfuss has no occasion to be looking for another pitcher. The young collegian looks to be a very promising youngster."
Bucky Veil In The News
Veil received similarly good press throughout the season and was well respected by his teammates – including Owner Dreyfuss, Player-Manager Clarke and Wagner. Veil was the only rookie of those pitchers who reported to Hot Springs in March to be retained by the Pirates throughout the season. Used primarily in relief and as a spot starter, Veil compiled a credible 5-4 record, despite being unavailable for more than a month due to an undisclosed illness. With his help, the Pirates won their third straight National League pennant by 6½ games over the New York Giants, and met the American League Champion Boston Pilgrims in the first "world championship series" between the two major leagues in October.
Bucky Veil Career Defining Moment
The highlight of Veil's professional baseball career occurred on October 2nd, when in relief of Pirate ace Leever, he held Boston to one run over the eight innings he pitched. The Pirates, crippled by injuries to star position players Wagner and Clarke, and starting pitchers Leever and Doheny, lost the series to Boston, 5 games to 3. Veil pitched so well in the second game of the series that it was widely speculated in the press that Clarke would come back with him in games 7 or 8, but he did not, relying instead on the veteran Phillippe, who pitched 5 of the 8 games played. Reportedly, Clarke regretted the fact that he did not make better use of Veil in the series.
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