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as Iff fS": % l!-r l i l: J • •; / I "r * i . « / /" / ;" ["f * ... i ; J Ut I Wakefield Remains With Yankees Chandler Upholds White Sox Claim Players Demands for Salary Increase of ,500 Relieves Chicago Club of Obligations CINCINNATI, Ohio, May 11 UP. — Baseball Commissioner A. B. "Happy" Chandler today decreed that outfielder Dick Wakefield still is the property of the New York Yankees. In a lengthy decision Chandler upheld the claim of the Chicago White Sox that Wakefields demand for a salary increase of ,500 for 1950 as a condition of reporting to the Chicago team relieved the White Sox of the obligation of taking him. Chandler heard testimony from the Sox and the Yankees in the case Saturday. Wakefield was traded to the Sox for outfielder Johnny Ostrowski and an undisclosed sum of money. He refused to report unless the Sox offered him a. 2,500 contract — the same as he received with the Detroit Tigers in 1949. Frank Lane, Sox general manager, refused Wakefields demand and declared the trade off when he failed to report. The Yankees, through general manager George Weiss, said the deal should be valid. Chandlers decision said: "On Friday, April 28, following some preliminary discussions in New York, Frank Lane, of the Chicago American League club, entered into negotiations, via long distance telephone, with George Weiss, of the New York Yankees, for the purchase of the contract of player Richard Wakefield. Weiss Telegram to Lane "After some telephone conversations, Mr. Weiss sent the following telegram to Lane, at 6:52 p. m. on April 28: " "This will confirm assignment of player Richard Wakefield to Chicago by New York for a consideration of... and the purchase of player John Ostrowski by Kansas City from Chicago for consideration of... You make out all papers. "After this telegram. Lane tried for two days to reach Weiss on the telephone, but was unsuccessful. "Mr. Lane sent no response to this message until Sunday, April 30, when he advised Weiss by telegram that the deal . was off. "It is the contention of Lane that one of the conditions of the purchase of Wakefields contract was the assurance that the player would report to Chicago in time for the doublelheader. game with Detroit on Sunday, April 30, and Ostrowski was to report to Kansas City, at Milwaukee, on Sunday 30 April, if Wakefield reported to Chicago on Sunday. "Wakefield was given notice of the assignment by the New York club in Washington, D. C, on Friday evening, April 28. "On Saturday, April 29, Mr: Lane contacted Wakefield by telephone atWashing-ton after press accounts reported that the player was balking at the transfer. At that time Wakefield advised Lane that he would not report to the Chicago club on Sunday, or any other day, unless the Chicago club gave him a contract restoring his 1949 salary with the Detroit club, rather than a contract based on the terms of his 1950 Yankees contract. Lane Prepared Agreements "Lane states that he had prepared agreements, in accordance with Weiss* direction, on Saturday morning, April 29. They read: " Outright in consideration of . . . payable on or before July 1, 1950. "This transaction is predicated upon the player promptly accepting assignment of his 1950 contract and reporting to party of the second part as directed in good health and physical condition so as to be available to participate in championship games played by party of the second part at Comiskey Park, Chicago, 111., on Sunday, April 30, 1950. "On Monday, May 1, Mr. Weiss prepared agreements and forwarded them to the commissioners office. The body of this agreement reads: "For and in consideration of the sum of . . . payable on or before July 1, 1950. "Both parties requested a hearing. "At a hearing before the commissioner on Friday, May 5, Lane insisted that the deal was predicated upon Wakefield reporting Sunday. This, however, Weiss denied, although he agreed that Lane did stress the fact that he wanted Wakefield for the Sunday double-header. "The testimony given was conflicting. Neither of the proposed agreements were signed by both parties. The commissioner was forced to conclude that their verbal understandings were at variance. "Since there is no definite proof, the commissioner cannot determine whether there was actually a meeting of minds with respect to the transaction. Under the circumstances, the commissioner has no choice but to have the situation revert to the status that existed before the telephone negotiations of April 28. "Wakefields contract is still the prop- CASEY STENGEL— New York Yankees manager reveals his outfield plans. erty of the New York Yankees, and Os-trowskis contract is the property of the Chicago American League Club. "All clubs are hereby notified that, in cases where the parties disagree as to what they agree verbally to do, the commissioner cannot determine what the verbal agreement is and order performance accordingly. "When a verbal agreement is made, that agreement should be immediately followed by a wire or letter from the party of the first part to the party of the second part, setting forth the full details and understandings, and the party of the second part should wire or write an acceptance, if the terms and conditions are satisfactory."