Gary Old-Timers to honor Nick Crnkovich
By John Mutka Post-Tribune senior correspondent January 4, 2013 11:32PM
Updated: February 6, 2013 6:12AM
Former football coach Nick Crnkovich will be honored by the Gary Old Timers Athletic Association on Wednesday at its 67th annual banquet with a lifetime achievement award. Former pitcher Gaylord Perry will be the keynote speaker. Both are Hall of Famers.
Crnkovich coached Andrean from 1967-71, a stretch that included 22 consecutive victories. Successive 10-0 seasons in 1968-69 highlighted his 36-10-2 record with the 59ers. The Gary city champs added two victories in 1970 before the streak ended with a 13-0 loss at Hobart.
Crnkovich also coached at Whiting from 1973 to 1980. His 47-30 record there included a 9-2 season in 1974.
Perry pitched for eight teams from 1962-83, compiling 314 victories, 3,534 strikeouts and a 3.11 ERA. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1991.
Notorious for doctoring pitches, the controversial right hander was frequently accused of using the spitball, but rarely penalized.
Perry was the first pitcher to win Cy Young Awards in both leagues. He won in 1972 with a 24-16 record with Cleveland in 1972. Six years later he was honored for going 21-6 in San Diego.
Former manager Gene Mauch once quipped that Perry’s Hall of Fame plaque should have a tube of K-Y jelly attached. Gene Tenace, who caught Perry in San Diego, mentioned having trouble returning his pitches because the greasy ball would slip out of his hand.
Tickets to the GOTAA banquet cost $30. They may be purchased by calling Doug Miller (476-4220) or emailing him at firstname.lastname@example.org.