||Robert Garnett Blattner
|| United States
Robert Garnett Blattner (February 8, 1920 – September 4, 2009), commonly known as "Buddy" or "Bud" Blattner, was an American table tennis and baseball player and radio and television sportscaster.
A graduate of Beaumont High School in St. Louis, Blattner played table tennis in his youth, winning the world men's doubles championship in 1936. He started his baseball career with the St. Louis Cardinals, making his big-league debut in the 1942 season. Following a stint in the U.S. Navy, Blattner played for the New York Giants (1946–48) and Philadelphia Phillies (1949), playing primarily at second base.
Blattner turned to broadcasting after his retirement as a player, teaming with Dizzy Dean on St. Louis Browns radio as well as nationally on the Liberty and Mutual networks, and on the televised baseball Game of the Week on ABC (1953–54) and CBS (1955–59).
Blattner was replaced on CBS by Pee Wee Reese following a dispute with Dean. He continued to broadcast baseball for the Cardinals (1960–61), Los Angeles/California Angels (1962–68), and Kansas City Royals (1969–75) as well as on NBC in 1969. He also called games for the St. Louis Hawks of the National Basketball Association in the '50s.
In 1962, Blattner founded the "Buddy Fund", a charitable organization that supplies athletic equipment to disabled and underprivileged children in the St. Louis area.
Awards and honors
Blattner was inducted into the U.S. Table Tennis Association Hall of Fame in 1979, and the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame in 1980.
Blattner died at his home in Chesterfield, Missouri from lung cancer, aged 89.