On August 2, 1927, Griffith Stadium played host to "Walter Johnson Day" in honor of the 20th anniversary of the Big Train's major-league debut. This charming ribbon from the celebration measures 2-1/2 x 5" and features a clean, boldly printed central area with a few small spots of peripheral fraying. It was Ty Cobb's Tigers whom Johnson first faced back in 1907, and Cobb's colorful recollection can be viewed on our website.
“On August 2, 1907," Cobb recalled, "I encountered the most threatening sight I ever saw in the ball field. He was only a rookie, and we licked our lips as we warmed up for the first game of a doubleheader in Washington. Evidently, manager Pongo Joe Cantillon of the Nats had picked a rube out of the cornfields of the deepest bushes to pitch against us…He was a tall, shambling galoot of about twenty with arms so long they hung far out of his sleeves and with a side arm delivery that looked unimpressive at first glance…One of the Tigers imitated a cow mooing and we hollered at Cantillon: ‘Get the pitchfork ready, Joe-your hayseed’s on his way back to the barn’…The first time I faced him I watched him take that easy windup-and then something went past me that made me flinch. The thing just hissed with danger. We couldn’t touch him…every one of us knew we’d met the most powerful arm ever turned loose in a ball park.”