“To Tell The Truth” and several other popular game shows from the 1950’s and 1960’s would often feature professional athletes as guests and participants during an episode. I stumbled upon this episode of To Tell The Truth which featured the 2 bat boys from the inaugural season of the Minnesota Twins, with the Washington Senators moving to the Twin Cities for the 1961 season. While you might not appreciate why a game show back in 1961 would want to use the Minnesota Twins new bat boys as participants, it plays out well, with the “stars” asking good questions, testing the bat boys knowledge.
The episode can be watched here, spanning from the 8:45 minute mark to the 16:15 minute mark.
A few interesting things that stand out about this episode: The episode was sponsored by Salem cigarettes. The contestants would receive a free carton of Salem cigarettes after their time on the show was over. However, since the portion of the show included these high school kids acting as Minnesota Twins bat-boys, the cigarettes were not offered when they left the stage.
It is also interesting to see the baseball knowledge and interest shown by the “stars”. Baseball was a popular game in 1961, including being popular among the Hollywood crowd. Don Ameche especially, as his questions zeroed in on the inaugural game played by the Twins, at Yankee Stadium. He was correct that Pedro Ramos pitched a 3-hitter for the Twins and a shut-out. The score of the game was actually 6-0, Twins.
The give-away that the first set of “twins” were the actual Twins bat-boys should have been the fact they did not have a northeastern accent, like the 2nd set and 3rd set of “twins” had, who were all from New York and New Jersey (near where the show was filmed).
Richard and Peter King are pictured here, in the bottom row of the 1961 Minnesota Twins team photo.
Minnesota Twins 1st manager, Harry “Cookie” Lavagetto.
Note the jersey shown in the card of Lavagetto was actually the jersey the Twins wore during Spring Training games in 1961, as they had not yet finalized their official jersey for the 1961 season. The script across the front did change in time for the 1961 season opener to the familiar “Twins” script.