Saturday, December 9, 2023

RIP - Vic Davalillo

Vic Davalillo, who began his career in the 1960s as the Indians' center fielder, and ended it in the 1980s as the Dodgers' superb pinch-hitter, passed away on December 6, 2023 at age 84.
Davalillo played in the Reds' farm system from 1958-61, then was traded to the Indians after the 1961 season. He debuted with the Tribe in April 1963, and was their regular center fielder from 1963-65. He finished 3rd in AL batting in 1965. 
He platooned with others in center field for the next 2 seasons, then moved over to right field in 1968 until his mid-season trade to the Angels, spelling the end of his status as a full-time player. 
During the 1969 season, Davalillo was traded to the Cardinals, and then to the Pirates in '71 and A's in '73. 
After Oakland released him following the 1974 season, he spent 2 1/2 years in the Mexican League. 
In August 1977 the Dodgers came calling, and he joined them as a pinch-hitter for the next 2+ seasons. Although he was released after the 1979 season, the Dodgers re-signed him for the 2nd half of 1980.
Davalillo played in the Venezuelan Winter League through the 1987 season (at age 48).  


John Bateman said...

I would have thought he was older.

Glad you reported on it - I did not know.

As a kid collecting in Pittsburgh in the early 1970s - His 1972 Topps card was the most sought and never found.

Sad to hear - a little bit of my childhood is gone.

Jim from Downingtown said...

I started collecting cards in 1967. Of the 490 single-player (non-Rookie Stars) cards in that set, 277 are now deceased (57%).

As expected, the managers are all but gone. Only Reds' manager Dave Bristol (who was 33 at the time) is still living.