June 29, 1915|
|Died: February 28, 1972
|April 25, 1939 for the Detroit Tigers|
|Last MLB appearance|
|February 28, 1957 for the Baltimore Orioles|
|Earned run average||3.23|
|Career highlights and awards|
Paul Howard "Dizzy" Trout (June 29, 1915 – February 28, 1972) was a Major League Baseball pitcher primarily for the Detroit Tigers. Born in Sandcut, Indiana, he first played professionally in 1935 with the Terre Haute Tots in the Three-I League before signing with Detroit in 1939.
In his first four seasons (1939–1942), Dizzy Trout never had a winning record and totaled 33 wins and 44 losses. Even in 1940, as the Tigers won the American League pennant, Trout finished 3-7.
Whereas Trout had a losing record in his first four seasons, the next four years (1943–1946) saw Trout turn into one of the best pitchers in the American League, winning 82 and losing 54.
Dizzy Trout led the American League in wins in 1943 with 20 wins, but his best season was 1944, when he won 27 games and lost 14. He led the American League that year in ERA (2.12), complete games (33), shutouts (7), and innings pitched (352-1/3). He also finished second in the league to his Detroit teammate, Hal Newhouser, in wins (27) and strikeouts (144). The Tigers' pitching duo of Trout and Newhouser won 56 games in 1944 and finished 1-2 in ERA, wins, innings pitched, strikeouts, complete games, and shutouts. Newhouser and Trout also finished 1-2 in the American League MVP voting, with Trout trailing Newhouser in the voting by only 4 votes.
Trout's pitching totals were not as impressive in 1945, but he was a workhorse in the pennant drive. He pitched six games and won four over a nine-game late-season stretch. In Game 4 of the 1945 World Series, Trout beat the Cubs 4-1 on a five-hitter. The Tigers won the 1945 World Series, and Trout went 1-1 with an ERA of 0.66 in the Series.
From 1947-1949, Trout's performance dropped off, as he failed to achieve a winning record, and had a total record of 23-31.
Aside from his pitching, Trout could hit for power. He hit 20 home runs, tying him for 11th all-time in home runs by pitchers. He hit a 9th inning grand slam against the Washington Senators on July 28, 1949, helping the Tigers to a victory.
On June 3, 1952, Trout was sent to the Boston Red Sox in a blockbuster trade that sent Walt Dropo, Don Lenhardt, Johnny Pesky, Fred Hatfield, and Bill Wight to the Tigers for Trout, George Kell, Hoot Evers, and Johnny Lipon. Trout started only 17 games for the Red Sox, and retired at the end of the 1952 season.
After retiring from baseball, Trout called play-by-play for the Tigers on radio WKMH and TV WJBK-TV from 1953-1955. He also hosted The Knot-Hole Gang, a sports show aimed at children. Trout broadcast the Tigers games with Van Patrick and became popular with Detroit fans for his self-effacing humor, scrambled syntax, and folksy demeanor.
He attempted a return to baseball with the Baltimore Orioles in 1957 at age 42. Trout made two appearances, allowed three earned runs, and retired one batter, for an 81.00 ERA. After being released by Baltimore, he joined the Chicago White Sox as a pitching instructor and then worked with that organization's front office until his death from stomach cancer at the age of 56 in 1972 at Harvey, Illinois.
He was inducted into the Indiana Baseball Hall of Fame in 1981.
Trout's son, Steve, pitched for 12 years in the major leagues.
- Best pitching seasons by a Detroit Tiger
- 1945 Detroit Tigers season
- 1950 Detroit Tigers season
- List of Major League Baseball ERA champions
- List of Major League Baseball wins champions
- List of Major League Baseball all-time leaders in home runs by pitchers
- "Indiana Baseball Hall of Fame". Indbaseballhalloffame.org. Retrieved 2012-06-04.