Doug, Idaho Falls, ID
Subj: Hammerin’ Hank
A buddy of mine told me that Hank Aaron got cut from the Brooklyn Dodgers. Is that actually true or is he just making it up?
Your friend was giving you the straight dope. Aaron attended a Dodgers tryout camp in 1949 when he was just 15-years-old. Unfortunately he was unable to overcome his nerves and inexperience and the club passed him over in favor of several more mature prospects. Undeterred by the incident, Aaron kept persisting and he was signed two years later to a local semi-pro team called the Mobile Black Bears. The club was made up of grown men who worked during the week and Aaron earned between three and five dollars a game depending upon the quality of his performance. It wasn’t much, but it allowed him to perfect his game and he soon signed with the Indianapolis Clowns who in turn sold him to the Boston Braves, hence beginning his Major League career.