Joe Antolick

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Joe Antolick
Catcher
Born: (1916-04-11)April 11, 1916
Hokendauqua, Pennsylvania
Died: June 25, 2002(2002-06-25) (aged 86)
Catasauqua, Pennsylvania
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
September 20, 1944 for the Philadelphia Phillies
Last MLB appearance
September 26, 1944 for the Philadelphia Phillies
Career statistics
Batting average .333
Hits 2
Runs batted in 0
Teams

Joseph Antolick (April 11, 1916 – June 25, 2002) was an American professional baseball player and manager. The catcher appeared in four Major League games for the Philadelphia Phillies in 1944 as a 28-year-old rookie. Antolick, a native of Hokendauqua, Pennsylvania, threw and batted right-handed. He stood 6 feet (1.8 m) tall and weighed 185 pounds (84 kg).

Antolick is one of many ballplayers who only appeared in the Majors during World War II. His pro career began in 1938 and extended through 1951, but the highest minor league level he reached was Class A (roughly equivalent to Double-A today) with the Utica Blue Sox of the Eastern League in 1945. A season earlier, he was recalled by the Phillies after the 1944 minor league season—which he spent with the Class B Wilmington Blue Rocks—for his big-league debut on September 20, 1944, in a home game against the Cincinnati Reds at Shibe Park. Facing ace right-hander Bucky Walters as a pinch hitter, he grounded out, Walters to first baseman Frank McCormick.[1] Five days later, he started his only MLB game at catcher and collected his first hit, a single off the Chicago Cubs' Charlie Gassaway.[2] Then, the following day, he relieved starting catcher Johnny Peacock and singled in his only at bat off Hank Wyse, one of only four Phillies' hits in a 15–0 loss.[3]

In four games he was 2-for-6 (.333) with a walk and one run scored. In his three appearances as a catcher he handled 10 chances without making an error and participated in one double play.

From 1946–1951, Antolick was a player-manager in the low minors. He died at the age of 86 in Catasauqua, Pennsylvania.

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