Wednesday, December 30, 2015

RIP - Frank Malzone

Former Red Sox' 3rd baseman Frank Malzone passed away on December 29, 2015 at age 85.

Malzone played for the Red Sox from 1955 to 1965 and was their regular 3rd baseman from '57 to '65. He finished 2nd in the AL Rookie of the Year voting in 1957, and made the All-Star team 6 times.

Malzone wrapped up his career in 1966 with the California Angels.

After his playing career, Malzone was a scout for the Red Sox for 35 years.

In 1995 he was one of the first players inducted into the Red Sox Hall of Fame.

Boston Herald obituary

USA Today obituary

Monday, December 28, 2015

RIP - Jim O'Toole

Former Reds and White Sox hurler Jim O' Toole passed away on December 26, 2015 in Cincinnati, Ohio at age 78.

After a 1-game cup of coffee in September 1958, O'Toole pitched for the Reds from 1959 to 1966. He won 19 games in 1961, and was the Reds' starting pitcher in games 1 and 4 in the World Series that season. O'Toole was also the NL's starting pitcher in the 1963 All-Star game.

In 1967 he played his final big-league season, with the White Sox. He pitched 1968 in the minors, then retired after an unsuccessful tryout with the expansion Seattle Pilots in the Spring of 1969.

He was inducted into the Reds Hall of Fame in 1970.

Cincinnati Reds website

New York Times obituary

Jim O'Toole

Sunday, December 20, 2015

RIP - Hal Brown

Hal Brown, a knuckleballer who pitched for 5 teams from 1951-1964, passed away on December 17, 2015 at age 91.

Brown began his career with the White Sox, then played for the Red Sox for a few seasons until making his way to the Baltimore Orioles in July 1955.

The bulk of Brown's career was spent with the O's. His best season there was 1960, winning 12 games with an ERA of 3.06.

Brown played the final weeks of the '62 season for the Yankees, then wrapped up his career playing 2 seasons for the Houston Colt .45s.

 Greensboro, NC obituary


Sunday, December 13, 2015

RIP - Gus Gil

Late-60s/early-70s 2nd baseman Gus Gil passed away on December 8, 2015 in Phoenix, AZ at age 76.

Gil was signed by the Reds in 1959, and made his major-league debut for the Indians in early 1967. He was their starting 2nd baseman for the first month or so, then returned to the minors for the 2nd half of the season.

Most of his big-league time was from 1969-71, playing for the Seattle Pilots/Milwaukee Brewers.

He also played baseball in Venezuela from 1959 to 1977, and was inducted into the Venezuelan Baseball Hall of Fame in 2008.

Brewers fan's blog


Saturday, December 12, 2015

1960s Blog Hall of Fame Results (#7)

Oh right, we had a Hall of Fame ballot here a few months ago didn't we? Here are the results... 

A pair of slugging 3rd basemen made it in this time - the Braves' Eddie Mathews and the Cubs' Ron Santo.

They join the 25 others shown below. Each made it by receiving the minimum 75% of the votes. (Although the sidebar poll shows that Santo received 85% and Mathews only received 71%, one voter chose to vote using the comments. He voted for Mathews and not for Santo, leaving them with 75% each.)

Complete results:
8 voters participated this time. Three players received less that the minimum 15% to be retained for the next ballot.

(Click the "hall of fame ballot" label below to see all past results.) 

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

RIP - Ken Johnson

Former 1960s' starting pitcher Ken Johnson passed away on November 21, 2015 at age 82.

Signed by the Philadelphia Athletics in 1952, Johnson pitched from 1958-70 for 7 teams, mostly the Kansas City Athletics, Houston Colt .45s, and the Atlanta Braves.

Johnson was the Colts' top starting pitcher for their first 3 seasons. In 1964 he pitched a no-hitter against the Reds, but lost 1-0. To date, he is the only pitcher to lose a no-hitter.

New York Times obituary

Fox Sports obituary

Sunday, November 8, 2015

RIP - Ed Sukla

Former Angels' relief pitcher Ed Sukla passed away on September 24, 2015 at age 72.

Sukla pitched in the minors every season from 1962 to 1975, and played for the Angels from September 1964 to May 1966.  In 1965 he won the first game in the Angels' new park in Anaheim.


(Sukla's card mate Jim McGlothlin passed away in 1975 from leukemia, 2 years after his final MLB season.)

Thursday, November 5, 2015

RIP - Barney Schultz

Barney Schultz -  a knuckle-balling relief pitcher for the Cubs and Cardinals in the early 1960s - passed away on September 6, 2015 at age 89.

Schultz pitched in 227 games, all in relief. He appeared briefly with the Cardinals (1955) and Tigers (1959), then found steady work in the Cubs' bullpen from 1961 to mid-1963.

His final stop was the Cardinals. Acquired in mid-season 1963, he was a key member of their bullpen in 1964, as the Cardinals passed the Phillies in the season's final week to clinch the NL pennant and win the World Series. Schultz recorded a 1.64 ERA that year.

He retired after the 1965 season, and was the Cardinals' pitching coach for a decade, and then briefly with the Cubs.

KMOX St. Louis obituary

SABR biography

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

RIP - Norm Siebern

Former AL 1st-baseman Norm Siebern passed away on October 30, 2015 in Naples, FL at age 82.

Siebern came up with the Yankees in 1956, and won a Gold Glove in 1958 as their left fielder. Traded to the Kansas City in the Roger Maris trade after the 1959 season, he switched to 1st base with the Athletics, and was a regular there for 4 seasons, making the All-Star game in '62 and '63.

Siebern was traded to the Orioles following the 1963 season, and was the Orioles' 1st-sacker for the next 2 years - also returning to the All-Star game in '64. Norm bounced from the Angels to the Giants to the Red Sox in his final 3 seasons, retiring midway through 1968.

I only caught the tail-end of his career, as a pinch-hitter for the Red Sox during their push to the 1967 World Series. Maybe CommishBob has some stories from Siebern's days with the Orioles.

New York Times obituary

Kansas City Star obituary

SABR biography

He was also on Facebook

Monday, October 26, 2015

RIP - John Tsitouris

Former Athletics' and Reds' pitcher John Tsitouris passed away on October 22, 2015 in his hometown of Monroe, NC at age 79.

Tsitouris played pro ball from 1954 to 1968, and was in the majors for at least parts of  every season from 1957 to 1968 (except 1961).

After breaking in with the Tigers in 1957, he played part of '58 and '59, and all of 1960 with the Kansas City Athletics. Traded to the Reds for pitcher Joe Nuxhall, John spent the entire 1961 season in the minors, then played for the Reds from 1962-68, with most of that work coming in the 1963-65 seasons. He retired after the 1968 season.

Coincidentally, I was just reading through his SABR biography a few days ago (it may have been on the date of his death, but I don't remember).

Charlotte (NC) Observer obituary

SABR biography

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

RIP - Dean Chance

Former Angels' and Twins' pitcher Dean Chance passed away in his hometown of Wooster, OH on October 11, 2015 at age 74.

Chance pitched for 11 seasons (1961-71), and led the AL in wins, ERA, complete games, and shutouts in 1964. He also won the the Cy Young Award that season, at age 23 the youngest winner up to that time.

A member of the 1961 expansion Angels, he threw out the first pitch in the Angels' 50th Anniversary game in 2011, and was inducted into the Angels Hall of Fame in August 2015.

 LA Times obituary

Minneapolis Star-Tribune obituary

NY Times obituary


Monday, October 5, 2015

1960s Blog Hall of Fame (#7)

It's time for another 1960s Blog Hall of Fame Election.

Last year, Whitey Ford and Warren Spahn were inducted, joining the other 23 members in the Hall. Four players received less than 15% of the vote and were dropped from the ballot, leaving 10 returning candidates this time:

Jim Bunning
Rod Carew
Orlando Cepeda
Frank Howard
Ferguson Jenkins
Roger Maris
Eddie Mathews
Boog Powell
Ron Santo
Billy Williams

Added to the ballot this time are 2nd baseman Bill Mazeroski (who missed the cut on the inaugural ballot) and outfielder Rocky Colavito.

^------ Use the sidebar poll to vote for up to 6 of the 12 people. The poll will close on Oct 31st.

Here is the voting history for all the current candidates:

Click on the "hall of fame ballot" label below to see the results of all previous elections.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

RIP - Tom Kelley

Former Indians' and Braves' pitcher Tom Kelley passed away on September 25, 2015 at age 71.

Kelley was a reliever for the Indians from 1964-67 (with '66 as his only full-season), then after 3 seasons in the minors, he resurfaced as a starting pitcher for the Braves from 1971-73. After 3 more seasons in the minors, he retired after the 1976 season.

He was inducted into his hometown Manchester Connecticut Sports Hall of Fame in 1987.


Wednesday, September 30, 2015

RIP - Bobby Etheridge

Former Giants' 3rd baseman Bobby Etheridge passed away on September 17, 2015 at age 73.

Etheridge played minor-league ball from 1964-68 with the Giants, and with several other teams from 1970-73.

He was a member of the San Francisco Giants for part of 1967 and all of 1969, playing 3rd base behind Jim Ray Hart and Jim Davenport.


Monday, September 28, 2015

RIP - 2014-2015

You've probably heard about all of these, but in the interest of continuity... 

The following members of 1960s Major League Baseball Alumni passed away in the previous 12 months.

I feel bad that for all he contributed to the Cubs' team and fan base, Mr. Cub never got to see a world championship - as a player or team ambassador.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

RIP - Yogi Berra

Former Yankees' catcher and manager Yogi Berra died of natural causes on September 22, 2015 at age 90.

Berra played for the Yankees from 1947 to 1963, then managed the Yankees in 1964, and in 1984-85. A 3-time AL MVP, he won 10 World Championships as a player, and played in 14 World Series in his 18 seasons, both career records.

Yogi also was a player-coach for the Mets in 1965, as shown on his final player card above. He also managed the Mets from 1972-75, winning the pennant in 1973.

I enjoyed watching a TV show (twice!) on the MLB Network last year, with Bob Costas following Yogi around his boyhood neighborhood in St. Louis, and in New York/New Jersey.

New York Times obituary

New York Post obituary