AAGPBL Interview - Jean Geissinger
Jean Geissinger was an All Star in both 1953 and 1954. In 1953 she also lead the league in RBIs. She granted us the following interview.
1) How did you get interested in playing baseball and where did you play before you turned pro?
Not since I was very young did I not play baseball. Played with all of my male relatives when I was 10 and under. Played fast-pitch in school years. I was invited to tryouts in Washington DC for Max Carey and the Ft. Wayne Daisies organization in 1951. I adjusted through practice.
2) Describe your signing.
Actually I was mailed a contract which both my parents had to approve and sign. Dad was elated, mom was concerned, until she was told of league policies such as chaperones and living with host families.
3) What position(s) did you play? Which teams did you play for?
I played all three outfield positions, liking center the best. I also did a little
4) What was the best thing about playing pro ball?
The competitive competition - I loved defense!
5) What was the worst thing about playing ball?
To be injured and out of the lineup.
6) What was the highlight of your career?
1953 - I ended the All Star Game with a home run in extra innings.
7) Who were the best players you played with or faced? Comments?
Jean Faut - best pitcher
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 fans and press were there for us - all the way.
9. Who were your favorite big league ballplayers during the era you played in?
Robin Roberts - There were more, I just can't think of any names.
10) Do you follow big league ball now? If so, how do you think it compares with your day?
No! Baseball was a game of truths!
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?)
There are so many variables to look at, but I think if women were to play - let it be in their own sphere with their own peers!
12) How do you feel about the Silver Bullets?
Was worth a shot - I just wish they had switched batteries. We did this on the traveling team. Good games for locals in small villages.
13) Briefly describe your life since your pro career ended.
A good one.
14) What advice do you have for young women who want to become pro ballplayers?
Be yourself, rely on your instinct and talent - you got here (pro life) being you, stay clean - unaffected by media.
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