May 23, 1912|
|Died: December 28, 1993
|April 29, 1934, for the Chicago Cubs|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 26, 1949, for the Philadelphia Athletics|
|Runs batted in||830|
|Career highlights and awards|
August John Galan (May 23, 1912 – December 28, 1993) was an American professional baseball player. A left fielder and center fielder, he played in the Major Leagues from 1934–49 for the Chicago Cubs (1934–41), Brooklyn Dodgers (1941–46), Cincinnati Reds (1947–48), New York Giants (1949) and Philadelphia Athletics (1949). Galan threw right-handed and began his career as a switch hitter, but, starting in the latter part of 1943, he became strictly a left-handed hitter until the end of his career. Born in Berkeley, California, Galan stood 6 feet (1.8 m) tall and weighed 175 pounds (79 kg).
One of eight children, Galan’s parents had emigrated from France in the late 19th century, and his father operated a French hand laundry on Berkeley’s University Avenue. At age 11 he broke his right elbow playing sandlot ball. He concealed the injury from his parents, fearful of being barred from further play. The arm was never set, healed improperly, and it was never fully healthy throughout Galan's professional career. He graduated from Berkeley High School.
Galan started in the Texas League and graduated to the San Francisco Seals of the Pacific Coast League in 1932. In 1933 he was PCL Most Valuable Player, and in 1934 was purchased by the Cubs.
In a 16-season big-league career, Galan posted a .287 batting average with 1,706 hits, 100 home runs and 830 run batted in in 1,742 games played. In 1937, Galan was the first player in the Majors to hit switch-hit home runs in a game. Galan was selected to three National League All-Star teams and homered in the 1936 contest off Schoolboy Rowe to help power the Senior Circuit to a 4–3 victory. He also played in three World Series (1935 and 1938 with the Cubs, and 1941 with the Dodgers), but his teams never won. Galan collected four Fall Classic hits in 29 total at bats (.138).
In 1935, he became the first full-time player to make 649 plate appearances and not hit into a double play, though he did hit into a triple play. Often injured (he broke his knee in 1940), Galan had a deformed arm from a childhood injury. A knee injury forced him to give up batting from the right side of the plate.
After leaving the Major Leagues in 1949, Galan returned to the San Francisco Bay Area and played two more seasons with the Oakland Oaks of the Pacific Coast League, then managed the club to a 77–103 record (seventh place) in 1953. He joined the Philadelphia Athletics' coaching staff in 1954, their last year in that city, and went on to spend 17 years as a minor league coach and manager in the Athletics' organization.
Augie Galan died in 1993 in Fairfield, California at 81 years of age. He was survived by his wife of 40 years, Shirley, and four children, Karen Dumont of Redding, Calif., Adrianne Hain of Napa, Calif, Augie Jr. of Portland, Ore. and Darcy Rafferty of Newark, N.J.
- List of Major League Baseball career runs scored leaders
- List of Major League Baseball annual runs scored leaders
- List of Major League Baseball annual stolen base leaders
- Solomon, Abbot Neil, "Baseball Records Illustrated", Quintet Publishing, London, 1988
- "Single Season Grounding Into Double Play Records" Check
|url=value (help). baseball-almanac.com. Retrieved 4 April 2012.[permanent dead link]
- Career statistics and player information from Baseball-Reference, or Baseball-Reference (Minors)
- Augie Galan at Find a Grave
|Oakland Oaks manager