Tuesday, April 25, 2017

4/25 Expo Park-Forbes Field Era: HBD Tom, Dutch, Fred, Jimmy, Ed & Bob; Wally, Roberto, Hans Come Up Big

  • 1864 - C Tom Quinn was born in Annapolis, Maryland. He played three years in the show, getting a cup of coffee with the Alleghenys in 1886 (0-for-11) and finishing with the outlaw Pittsburgh Burghers (.213) in 1890. Tom got a job with the state after he was done with baseball and lived in Swissvale the remainder of his days.
  • 1868 - 3B Fred “Dutch” Hartman was born in Allegheny City (Northside). He began his career as a Pirate in 1894 and hit a strong .319. After a couple of years of seasoning, he returned to the big leagues in 1897 after a trade to the Browns, where he was considered a highly touted addition to the club. He never took off and Dutch ended up pretty much a league-average player, hitting .278 during a six-year career. After baseball, he remained in the area, living in McKeesport.
Fred Haney w/owner John Galbreath & GM Branch Rickey
(photo April 13, 1954 Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)
  • 1896 - Fred Haney was born in Albuquerque. He managed the Bucs as a favor to Branch Rickey from from 1953-1955. His record reflects the fact that he was brought in during the early stages of a youth movement, losing 104, 101 and 94 games for a 163-299 (.353) slate, although he was used to the drill after managing the sad-sack St. Louis Browns from 1939-41. But he delivered when finally given some players. He moved on to Milwaukee and won back-to-back NL titles and the 1956 World Series. Later, he was the LA Angels first GM.
  • 1899 - In a sign of things to come, Pittsburgh lost to Louisville 2-1 at Eclipse Park as future Bucco SS Honus Wagner went 4-for-4 with 2 HRs‚ the second being a ninth-inning game winner. The Colonels were managed by future Pirate skipper (and player) Fred Clarke. The following season, most of Louisville’s top players followed owner Barney Dreyfuss to Pittsburgh.
  • 1910 - IF Jimmy Brown was born in Jamesville, North Carolina. A seven-year major league vet with an All-Star game under his belt, he was signed by the Bucs in 1946 after a two-year hiatus in the Army Air Force. He played three infield spots and hit .241 off the bench in his last hurrah. In 1947 he became a manager in the Pirates farm system at Indianapolis and New Orleans before returning to the NL as a coach for the Boston Braves in 1949. After leaving Beantown in 1952, he managed minor league teams for the Cardinals, Braves and Reds.
A dapper Ed Vargo (photo via Ancestry.com)
  • 1930 - Umpire Ed Vargo was born in Butler. He was a NL ump from 1960-1983 and the umpire supervisor from 1984-1997. Vargo worked the first night World Series game in 1971, two of Sandy Koufax's no-hitters, the last games at Forbes Field/the Polo Grounds, four All-Star Games, four NLCS, four World Series, the first game at Candlestick Park and the game in which Hank Aaron tied Babe Ruth's career home run record. Ed was inducted into the Butler County Sports Hall of Fame in 1966 and the Western Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame 1994. (bio via Baseball Reference)
  • 1943 - RHP Bob Johnson was born in Aurora, Illinois. He pitched for the Bucs from 1971-73, beginning as a starter and ending in the bullpen. He went 17-16-7/3.34 as a Pirate and appeared in a pair of NLCS and in the 1971 World Series.
  • 1948 - Wally Westlake homered, doubled, and drove in six runs while Ed Stevens added five more RBI to lead the Bucs to a 13-10 win over the Reds in the second game of a twinbill at Crosley Field. Pittsburgh lost the opener 7-6 in the ninth.
Roberto Clemente 1958 Topps Classic
  • 1958 - Roberto Clemente was in fine form as he led the Bucs to a 4-3 win against Cincinnati at Crosley Field. He scored in the sixth after a leadoff double and then smacked his first long ball of the year, a two-out, three-run shot in the seventh that stood as the game-winner. Vern Law claimed the win after an ElRoy Face save while future Bucco Harvey Haddix took the loss.

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