The game was the brainstorm of a Texas coffee salesman who, while making his rounds, overheard Hye General Store owner Fritz Deike bragging that he had enough sons to make up the little town’s baseball team. Thus was born a promotional idea that sent the salesman in search of another family team he could match against the Texans.

He found it in Waukegan, where the Stanczaks had a reputation for taking on all comers. They’d already defeated one all-brothers team from faraway Hawk Springs, Wyoming, in a 1929 home-and-home series. He could bet they’d be happy to play the Deike brothers -- anytime, anyplace.

Understand that the Stanczaks, ranging in age from 20 to 40, took their baseball seriously. The fact is, third baseman Michael, who would ultimately become a Catholic priest, saw his evangelical calling briefly delayed when he opted to skip his first ordination ceremony because a game had been scheduled. The archbishop might not have been pleased, but, hey, history shows that Father Mike hit a game-winning double that day.

The brothers had begun playing baseball as youngsters in a vacant field near their Waukegan home. And as they grew older, they joined various neighborhood teams. Ultimately, they decided it was time to combine efforts and field their own family team. Their reputation grew rapidly as they routinely won local amateur league and tournament championships.