AAGPBL Interview - Mabel Holle
Mabel Holle played in the old AAGPBL. She took the time to answer a few of our questions.
1) How did you get interested in playing baseball and where did you play before you turned pro?
I always liked to play sports and spent most of my time outdoors. Then I played on town teams. Girls and women in those days could not play on their school and college teams.
2) Describe your signing.
I met a scout outside of St. Louis, Missouri. I could not believe how wonderful this AAGPBL would be. The contract called for $55 a week.
3) What position(s) did you play? Which teams did you play for?
I always played outfield. I had a strong arm and could throw out runners. I played for the South Bend Blue Sox of the AAGPBL.
4) What was the best thing about playing pro ball?
The thrill of being on a pro team. Playing every day with and against strong teams. Being treated like a pro by not only management, but by your team and fans. And of course being together with your teammates.
5) What was the worst thing about playing ball?
None that I can think of. It was so much fun.
6) What was the highlight of your career?
My mother and two little sisters came by bus from my hometown of Jacksonville, Illinois. As luck would have it, I got the game-winning hit.
7) Who were the best players you played with or faced? Comments?
Dottie Schroeder - Teammate
8) Do you think the fans and press accepted you more as the years wore on? (Describe how it was when you started. Did increased exposure change some minds?)
The exposure the first year was fantastic. I only got to play one year, but I'm sure the gals got lots of coverage as the years went by. We were always accepted by the fans. Probably after the war was over and people had cars and money and TV, things did change.
9. Who were your favorite big league ballplayers during the era you played in?
Stan Musial and Dizzy Dean of the St. Louis Cardinals.
10) Do you follow big league ball now? If so, how do you think it compares with your day?
Yes - a Cubs fan.
11) Should women have their own pro league, should they play in the majors, or should we have both (a women's league and the chance for the best women players to play in the majors?)
I say they should have anything they can get. We waited long enough for the chance to play. If you are skilled enough to play in the Majors, more power to you. It will be difficult.
12) How do you feel about the Silver Bullets?
I don't know much about them.
13) Briefly describe your life since your pro career ended.
I graduated from college and became a PE teacher. Later on department chair of of the PE department at Waukeegan's west campus. After Title IX was passed, I coached various athlete teams at the highschools level. I was varsity softball coach for a long time.
14) What advice do you have for young women who want to become pro ballplayers?
Learn the skills. Play lots and lots. Make your high school and college teams and most of all, work hard to reach your goals. Good things will come to you.
15) Any other memories or comments?
The AAGPBL has annual reunions. It is still and always a dream come true and a thrill to have played in the AAGPBL.
What do you think of this article?
Leave feedback on our message board.