Allen at the 1924 Colored World Series
|Second Baseman and Manager|
May 19, 1901|
|Died: June 11, 1988
|Negro leagues Farm Club: 1922 for the All Nations|
|Last professional appearance|
|1947, Indianapolis Clowns|
Born in Austin, Texas, he began his Negro League career late in 1922 with the Kansas City Monarchs and, except for brief stints with other teams in 1931 and 1932, stayed with the Monarchs until his retirement in 1948. Long known for his leadership ability, he became the Monarchs' manager in 1941 when Andy Cooper suffered a pre-season stroke and died during the season. He won the Negro American League championship that season, but resigned as manager just before the beginning of the following season, resuming his duties as a reserve infielder.
Allen's accomplishments as a player were even more impressive. A master at scoring runs, he bunted, stole bases and almost always provided the spark his team needed to win. Among the fastest baserunners of his generation of Negro Leaguers, his most remarkable season was his 1929 campaign, in which he batted .330 while hitting 24 doubles and stealing 23 bases in a typically abbreviated Negro League season.
Like the comparable Judy Johnson, he was a remarkable fielder, arguably the best fielding second baseman of any race from the 1920s through the 1940s, and was at his best in pressure situations. Unlike Johnson, Newt Allen is not in the Hall of Fame, although many experts regard him as having been superior to many white inductees. Allen did make the list of 39 finalists for the 2006 special Negro Leagues and Pre-Negro Leagues Election, but was not one of the 17 finally chosen.
Newt Allen is also listed on the second team of a 1952 Pittsburgh Courier Poll of the Greatest Black Players.
Allen died at age 87 in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Known statistics: .293 career batting average, 16 home runs, 640 games.
- "Spencer Loses to Sherburn" Spencer Reporter, Spencer, IA, Wednesday, August 22, 1923, Page 1, Columns 3 and 4
- "Local Fans Expected to Swell Field" Capital Times, Madison, WI, Thursday, September 4, 1930, Page 15, Column 3
- "Packers Bow to Monarchs" Omaha World Herald, Omaha, NE, September 1, 1934, Page 11, Column 4
- "1952 Pittsburgh Courier Poll of Greatest Black Players."
- Negro league baseball statistics and player information from Seamheads.com, or Baseball-Reference (Negro leagues)
- Baseball Hall of Fame candidate biography at the Wayback Machine (archived February 7, 2006)