By Debby Woodin
If Webb City is the “City of Flags,” Neosho the “Flower Box City” and Joplin the “City that Jack (zinc) Built,” then Alba would have to be the “City of Diamonds.”
And the Boyer family — with seven brothers who played professional ball, three in the big leagues — would be in a league of its own at a time when the little cluster of towns of Alba, Purcell and Cossville produced at least three dozen professional ballplayers.
“There were 36 kids that signed pro contracts,” remembers one of the Boyer brothers, Lynn, of Carl Junction, who says that at the time, the population at Alba was around 300.
Southwest Missouri, Southeast Kansas and Northeast Oklahoma — the home of Mickey Mantle — were fertile recruiting grounds for the former Junior Cardinals League from the mid-1940s to the mid-1960s.
The death a week ago of former New York Yankees third baseman Cletis “Clete” Boyer gave the Boyer siblings and their childhood playmates a chance to remember Jasper County’s days in the limelight of the national sport.
Brother vs. brother
Those were the days when the Yankees, with Clete Boyer and teammates Mantle, Yogi Berra and Roger Maris, won the American League pennant from 1960 through 1964 and captured World Series championships in 1961 and 1962.
Clete Boyer and his older brother, seven-time All-Star Ken Boyer, made baseball history in 1964 when they played against each other — Ken on the family’s revered St. Louis Cardinals team — in the World Series. Both hit home runs. Ken Boyer’s Cardinals won that Series.
Ken died of cancer in 1983 at the age of 51. He and Clete followed their eldest brother, Cloyd, into the major leagues. All three were third basemen.
When asked for whom she was rooting in the Series when the Yankees and Cardinals faced off, their mother, Mabel Boyer, replied, “The third baseman.”
By Debby Woodin
- Joplin Metro
Longtime Democrat dies at 81
Sapp, 81, died Thursday. Funeral services were Monday at the First Presbyterian Church of Joplin. A longtime Jasper County Democratic committeewoman and volunteer, Sapp for years was secretary to the county’s central committee.
Nixon visits Joplin to sign breast density bill
Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon signed legislation at Freeman Hospital on Tuesday that will require radiologists in Missouri to provide information about breast density on post-mammogram reports.
Defendant draws 10 years for assault of ex-girlfriend
A Jasper County judge today sentenced a rural Joplin man to 10 years in prison for an assault on an ex-girlfriend with a walking stick that left one of her eyes detached from its socket.
Rural Joplin child dies from gunshot wound to head
A 3-year-old girl died Monday at 11:30 a.m. Monday at Freeman Health Systems after suffering a gunshot wound to the head. The incident occurred at the child's home in rural Joplin, said Sheriff Ken Copeland.
Suspect in coach's slaying posts bond
Jeffrey Bruner posted bond shortly before noon today and was released from the Jasper County Jail in Carthage.
Downtown group warns about Third Thursday mail scam
Officials with the Downtown Joplin Alliance on Friday announced that a mail scam involving Third Thursday has been discovered.
PART TWO: Joplin City Council report documents continued
As a result of a court order obtained by the Globe against the City of Joplin, and Thursday's waiving of appeal by the City Council, we have received a copy of the Thomas Loraine investigation report that led to the firing of former city manager Mark Rohr. Documents are converted for digital viewing.
The amount of documentation we received is extensive, and testimonies are continued here.
PART ONE: Joplin Globe receives copy of investigation named in court order
As a result of a court order obtained by the Globe against the City of Joplin, and Thursday's waiving of appeal by the City Council, we have received a copy of the Thomas Loraine investigation report that led to the firing of former city manager Mark Rohr. As documents are converted for digital viewing, they will be uploaded here.
In City Council race, Joplin voters elect two newcomers, three incumbents
Joplin voters rejected two incumbents who voted to fire City Manager Mark Rohr, instead electing two newcomers and returning three incumbents to the City Council who had supported Rohr.
Joplin voters reject all three charter changes
The changes were placed on the ballot by the City Council acting upon recommendations by a Charter Review Commission that met last fall.
- More Joplin Metro Headlines
- Longtime Democrat dies at 81