May 24, 1935, is the anniversary of the first night game played in Major League history with the Reds beating the Philadelphia Phillies, 2-1, but I think a better story happened on May 24, 1925.

Found in the book, “Day by Day in Cincinnati Reds History,” (by Floyd Connor and John Snyder), it’s reported that Reds’ catcher Astyanax Douglass and Phillies’ pitcher Jimmy Ring (a former Red) fought three times in one day. To quote the book:

“The first fight occurred on the field when Douglas interrupted an argument between Ring and the Reds’ Ivy Wingo (Ring’s 1919 World Series teammate) by punching Ring in the jaw. The two squared off again in the clubhouse after the game. Round three took place when Ring followed the Reds to the North Philadelphia Station, where the club was boarding a train to Boston, and battled Douglas again.”

(I’ve seen Douglass’s name spelled both “Douglass and Douglas” and I’ve seen Wingo’s first name spelled both as “Ivy” and “Ivey.”)

Douglass had two cups of coffee in the majors. His first cup came in 1921, when he played four games with the Reds (going 1-7) and he played seven games with the Reds in 1923 , going 3-17. He was released just a few days after his three ring “bout” with Jimmy Ring.

Ring had gone 10-9 with a 2.26 ERA with the 1919 World Championship Reds team. He also went 1-1 in the World Series with an 0.64 ERA. His career record was 118-149 with a 4.13 ERA, spending most of his career with the Phillies. The Reds had traded him to the Phillies for future Hall of Famer Eppa Rixey.

Wingo spent 17 seasons in the majors, including 13 for the Reds. His best season was 1922 when he batted .285 with 3 homers and 45 rbi in 80 games (catchers back then typically split time with at least one other catcher). Wingo was the defensive catcher for the Reds at the time with Bubbles Hargrave being the Reds’ offensive catcher. Hargrave is one of the few catchers to win a batting title. He hit .353 in 1926 to win the National League batting championship; he batted .300 in 87 games in 1925.

I don’t know anything else about the series of fights mentioned here. To complicate matters more, I look at baseball-reference.com and they list the game as happening on May 21, 1935. It’s not the first time I’ve seen date discrepancies and I’m not certain which is right or wrong. For May 24, baseball-reference.com says the Reds played the Cubs in a double header (they split). It does show the Reds playing the Phillies on May 21, but they don’t list Ring as pitching for the Phillies, but another pitcher, Hal Carlson, who threw a 4-1 complete game Phillie win. Wingo played in the game and went 0-3 and the boxscore shows Douglass entering the game, replacing Wingo, and going 0-1. So I feel this is probably the game, and who knows what Wingo and Ring were fighting about, or why Douglass got involved.

Whatever the case, it was a colorful story and it sure sounds like Jimmy Ring was pretty angry to have followed them to the train station.