Kennebunk’s Big Leaguers: The Baseball Legacies of Colby Jack and Bobby Coombs

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August 16, 2007 – January 13, 2009

 

The Brick Store Museum hit a home run with this exhibition on the two major league baseball players who called Kennebunk home: “Colby Jack” Coombs (1882-1957) and his nephew Bobby Coombs (1908-1991).

Colby Jack’s standout achievements as a pitcher included three wins for the Philadelphia Athletics in the 1910 World Series and numerous league records that stand to this very day. Bobby Coombs’ “probable world record” 26 strikeouts in a Kennebunk High School game in 1925 were a precursor to a prolific minor league career punctuated by two stints in the majors as an Athletic and as a NY Giant. In his very first outing as a big league pitcher under Connie Mack in 1933, Bobby had to pitch to the Yankees’ “Murderers’ Row” lineup. . .and gave Babe Ruth career home run #664.

The exhibition offered an opportunity for visitors to literally “round the bases” and learn about these men as Kennebunkers but also as players and as college coaches with university baseball stadiums named for each of them.

As part of the exhibition, several oral history interviews were videotaped in Spring 2007 with Coombs family descendants. Watch and listen to a selection below by clicking on an entry:

Remembering “Colby Jack” Coombs (3:34)

Remembering Bobby Coombs (4:35)

Bobby Coombs’ 26 Strike Outs Against Sanford (2:40)

Ola Coombs Maguire remembers her uncle John Coombs (6:26)

The Careers and Legacies of Colby Jack and Bobby Coombs’ (8:24)

Baseball: Then Versus Now (5:07)

This exhibition was made possible by the special athletic abilities of two Kennebunkers. Additional support provided by the Museum’s proud Business Partner; The Captain Lord Mansion.