Leaguer of the Month
Negro Leaguer of the Month
Carroll Ray "Dink" Mothell
Position: Catcher, utility
Batted: Both; Threw: Right
Height: 5 ’-10", Wt. 170
Born: August 16, 1897 in Topeka, Kansas
Died: December 4, 1980 in Topeka, Kansas
Teams: Chicago American Giants, Chanute (KS) Black Diamonds, All-Nations, Gilkerson's Union Giants, Cleveland Giants, Topeka Giants, Kansas City Monarchs
Dink Mothell was the epitome of the diversity that defined many Negro Leaguers. Though his greatest fame came as a catcher, Mothell was a fantastic utility man, playing every position on the diamond during his career, including pitcher. Mothell was a switch-hitter who usually batted in the .270-.290 range with moderate power and he was an excellent bunter.
After playing for his hometown Topeka Giants where he caught his brother, Earnest, on several occasions, Mothell played with several top black teams such as the Chicago American Giants and Gilkerson's Union Giants, but he was best known for his 11-year run with the Kansas City Monarchs. As a catcher, Mothell "caught the slants" of such legendary Monarch pitchers as Jose Mendez, John Donaldson, Bullet Rogan and Andy Cooper.
Mothell's prime years were from 1924-1930 when he batted a combined .275 with 90 doubles, 35 triples, 15 homers and 58 stolen bases in 1816 at bats versus Negro National League opponents. For some context, over a full 600-at bat Major League season, Mothell would have averaged almost 30 doubles a season with 11 triples and five homers, while scoring about 90 runs.
Mothell played for the Monarchs in the first Negro League World Series in 1924 when they beat the Philadelphia Hilldales, but he was out sick in '25 when Kansas City lost to the Hilldales in the second such World Series.
Mothell retired after the '34 season in which he traveled to Manila in the Philippines for some exhibition games with the Chicago American Giants, and he lived to the ripe old age of 83. Mothell was buried in Mount Hope Cemetery in Topeka in a modest grave with no headstone. Jeremy Krock, a SABR (Society of American Baseball Research) member who has helped put headstones on the graves of many Negro League stars of the past, secured one for Mothell's grave and it was unveiled at a ceremony in June of 2011.