Author: Paul Langendorfer

Paul Langendorfer

Paul Langendorfer is an avid sports fan with a deep passion for the National Pastime, especially when it comes to the New York Yankees. Born and raised in Buffalo, New York, Paul holds a B.A. from Canisius College, a M.A. from the University of Colorado at Denver. He is the author of the book Baseball in Buffalo. His current project is a contributor to the Seasons of Buffalo Baseball 1857-2020 book, which is being published by Billoni Associates Publishing and is due to be released in October. Paul currently resides in Buffalo with his wife and two children.

Every year, without fail, it happens. Sometimes earlier, sometimes later but the yearn, the itch to watch, to play the game starts. We wait for the snow to melt, for the grass to appear, thinking of how it will become green and it reminds us of our favorite place in the world. The perfect emerald green of a baseball diamond. Soon we will hear those magic words that come every February–“Pitchers and catchers report!” We take out the old mitt that has been stored away for a few months now, maybe under a mattress with a ball in it to…

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They were all smiling last night–Jimmy (Griffin), Ollie (Carnegie), Luuuke (Easter), and my father, Bob (Langendorfer). For the first time since 1885, when the National League Buffalo Bisons or if you prefer the 1915 Buffalo Blues “fanatics” or in 2021 lingo “fans” were in attendance to watch professional baseball in Buffalo, New York.  For the second consecutive year, the American League East Blue Jays migrated south to take up residence in our fair city as the result of the global pandemic. This year is different, however, since fans are allowed into Sahlen Field. Last night was the first of many…

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The weather has turned in our fair city and the cold days of winter are fading into the past. As we breathe in the spring air and look forward to a COVID-free world, sometime hopefully soon, the thoughts of many local sports fans turn to the boys of summer returning to Sahlen Field. While it is unknown at this time whether those boys will be our own Bisons or the migrant Jays from the north, it seems clear we will have baseball in Buffalo this year.  As we look forward to a return to normal, I am reminded of a…

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There is no doubt the times we are living in are extraordinary. The moments we are creating now will be remembered for a lifetime and many lifetimes beyond ours. If we look at a dictionary definition of “history in the making” we find the following citation, “An event happening now that will be remembered in the future because it is very important.” The definition does not tell us why it is important or to whom. It is generally thought of as an event that the mass population will recall, but in my opinion it can mean anything to anyone.  There…

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As the fall colors in Western New York (WNY) have peaked and before the days turn short and cold, it is a great time to go out and experience the beauty the area has to offer. One of the most enjoyable ways to do so is to take a local hike or walk. Even though it is traditionally the time of year to focus turn away from “the boys of summer” and to focus instead on the Bills and Sabres, many interesting tidbits of WNY’s baseball history can be found on these strolls. WNY has approximately 76 Major League Baseball…

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The Day the Music Died was February 3, 1959, when Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and the Big Bopper were killed in a plane crash. Or August 16, 1977, when the King of Rock ‘N Roll gyrated through the Pearly Gates. For Gen Xers like myself and Baby Boomers “The Day the Music Died-2.0” may well be yesterday October 6, 2020, when Eddie Van Halen passed into eternity. As readers may know, I write about the history of Buffalo and baseball history primarily, but music history has its own disciples and gurus. I do not profess to be one of them,…

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Several weeks ago, I had the fortune of sitting on the field of the former War Memorial Stadium and it brought back many memories of games long past. In its illustrious years, the “Old Rockpile” played host to many events as the home of the Buffalo Bills and of the Buffalo Bisons, as well as the setting for the iconic film The Natural. For one special night it also hosted the New York Yankees. On September 7, 2020, the Yankees returned to Buffalo for the first time since August 19, 1963. Buffalo has always seemingly been a “Yankees town” and…

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To everything -There is a Season. . .A Time to build up, a time to break down” -Turn! Turn! Turn! -song by The Byrds This past Friday, I had the opportunity to do something I think every Buffalonian should do once in their lifetime. It was a beautiful August morning and I sat on the field at Johnnie B. Wiley Amateur Athletic Sports Pavilion. For those who do not know, this is the location of the former War Memorial Stadium, once the home of the Buffalo Bills and of the Buffalo Bisons. It is also a part of Buffalo’s movie history…

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“Buffalo’s population is between 455,000 and 460,000 according to J.H. Madden, county supervisor of the state census enumeration . . . So far there is an increase of about eight per cent [sic] in the population of Buffalo over the federal census taken five years ago. – Buffalo Evening News-June, 21, 1915 Buffalo in the year 2020 is a much smaller, intimate community than it was 105 years ago. In 2019, the estimate for the upcoming 2020 census is 255,284. If we include the surrounding communities in Western New York, it will take us over the one million mark. Are…

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“It was a happy throng of fans who reluctantly made their exit through the gates at Federal Field yesterday afternoon and saw the doors close behind them for the last time this season, and it was a happy club that bade its constituents farewell as it boarded a train last night to begin its last campaign of an eventful year.” –Buffalo Courier, September 9, 1915 Unbeknownst to those joyous fans, it would be almost 105 years before the Queen City would again welcome Major League Baseball to its temporary home in a field named for an iconic hotdog company (Sahlen’s)…

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