Indians 1948 usher, age 94, recalls excitement of title, predicts another Tribe championship

Posted at 4:02 PM, Nov 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-01 16:49:39-04

Joe Barrett's love for the Indians dates back to when he was a kid growing up in Cleveland and he searched for ways to get into a ballgame in the 1930's.

At the age of 94, the Tribe fan, who now lives in Akron, recalls many fond baseball memories and predicts the 2016 Indians will capture the World Series.

"I used to hop the street cars to go to the old League Park and I would turn stiles to get in," Barrett recalled. 

Barrett would later serve in the Army and went to college at John Carroll through the GI Bill.

Around that time, he landed a job-- for one year only-- as an usher at Cleveland Municipal Stadium. That year was 1948.

"We would wipe the seats off. They'd give you a nickel or a dime or something like that."

Decades have passed, but Barrett still recalls the lineup that would win the World Series, a feat hasn't been repeated in 68 years.

"Dale Mitchell in left field, Larry Doby was center, Kennedy in right," Barrett said.

The senior spoke to News 5 from Summa Akron City Hospital where he underwent a heart valve replacement surgery on Monday.

Dr. Eric Espinal, said Barrett was the oldest patient to have the procedure at the hospital. The medical staff is amazed by his stamina and his story, especially since the Indians are a game away from winning the World Series.

Dr. Espinal was impressed with Barrett during a neurological evaluation prior to the procedure.

"He began naming the 1948 starting lineup for the Cleveland Indians, and I'll be honest with you, I didn't believe it, so I left the room and googled it and, by golly, he was right," Dr. Espinal said.

Barrett said, like many fans, he gets very nervous watching the Indians in the World Series, but he feels confident that Josh Tomlin will pitch well enough on Tuesday to clinch the title for the Tribe.

"If he pitches like he has been pitching, all they have to do is score some runs for him."