A Catcher’s Courage
“She owned home plate. She was a rough and tough catcher.”
Born Dorothy McAlpin, she grew up in Ohio playing ball with her brothers and in girls’ leagues. As a teenager, she went to work in a brewery and played for the company team, winning two world championships, before being signed by the AAGPBL for the inaugural season of 1943, when she led the Racine Belles to first place. Maguire did the same the following year with the Milwaukee Chicks and moved with the club to Grand Rapids for the 1945 season, before spending four years with the Muskegon Lassies, winning another league championship in 1947.
In a twist perhaps too amazing for the movies, approximately two months after learning that her husband had died, she got the surprise of a lifetime – he was in fact alive, but had lost his dog tags and been severely burned, and was unable to write to her until August 1. Corporal Maguire returned stateside and “vehemently pressed Dorothy to quit baseball to settle down at home.” Maguire declined the offer, and by 1945, they were divorced.