August 24, 1912|
Mason City, Iowa
|Died: April 7, 1995
Port Huron, Michigan
|April 28, 1940, for the Detroit Tigers|
|Last MLB appearance|
|August 10, 1946, for the Chicago Cubs|
|Runs batted in||36|
Frank Edward Secory (August 24, 1912 – April 7, 1995) was an American left fielder and umpire in Major League Baseball who played 186 games from 1940 to 1946 for the Cincinnati Reds, Detroit Tigers, and Chicago Cubs. His best season was 1944, when he batted .321 in 22 games for the Cubs, the team for which he played nearly his entire career. In Game 6 of the 1945 World Series, with the Cubs tied 7-7 with the Tigers, he had a pinch-hit single with one out in the 12th inning; a pinch runner later scored on a double to give the Cubs an 8–7 win and send the Series to a seventh game.
Secory was born in Mason City, Iowa, and moved in his youth to Michigan; he graduated from Western Michigan College with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1936. After making his debut with the Tigers, having one at bat in 1940, he was waived by the team and selected by the Reds. His promising career was sidetracked, however, when he fractured his leg sliding into home on May 10 of the following year while with the Syracuse Chiefs; he had been expected to shortly be promoted to the Reds. Despite missing three months, he ended the season with a .329 batting average and 15 runs batted in in 31 games. After his major league career ended with the Cubs in 1946, he became an umpire in the West Texas–New Mexico League in 1948 and the Texas League from 1949 to 1951.
Secory became a National League umpire from 1952 to 1970, and worked in the World Series in 1957, 1959, 1964 and 1969, serving as crew chief in 1964. He also officiated in the All-Star Game in 1955, 1958, 1961 (second game), 1964, 1967 and 1970. He was the second base umpire on May 26, 1959 when Harvey Haddix of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitched a perfect game for 12 innings before allowing a baserunner and eventually losing in the 13th; he was again at second base on June 21, 1964 when Jim Bunning pitched a perfect game for the Philadelphia Phillies, the first official regular-season perfect game since 1922.
In all, Secory umpired in nine official no-hitters in his career, which set a National League record for umpires and was then one short of the major league record held by Silk O'Loughlin. Secory tied Bob Emslie's NL record of eight no-hitters on May 1, 1969 when he worked second base in Don Wilson's 4-0 gem; after Augie Donatelli also tied the record later that year, Secory broke it by working in his ninth no-hitter on June 12, 1970, officiating at first base in Dock Ellis' 2-0 win. After Secory's retirement, Donatelli tied his record in 1972, and Tom Gorman tied it in 1976 before Paul Pryor broke it upon working in his 10th no-hitter in 1978. Secory was also behind the plate on May 26, 1956 when three Cincinnati Reds pitchers held the Milwaukee Braves hitless for nine innings before losing in the 10th; it was the first time in major league history that multiple pitchers combined to throw nine innings without allowing a hit. He was again at second base for the second game of a doubleheader at Shea Stadium on May 31, 1964, between the New York Mets and the San Francisco Giants, when the two teams battled for 23 innings before the Giants won 8-6, setting a record for the longest game ever at 7 hours 23 minutes.
- The Sporting News Baseball Register. 1964. pp. 378–79.
- 1942 National League Green Book, p. 44.
- 1970 National League Green Book, p. 30.
- Coberly, Rich (1985). The No-Hit Hall of Fame: No-Hitters of the 20th Century. Newport Beach, California: Triple Play. p. 111. ISBN 0-934289-00-X.
- Coberly, p. 127.
- Coberly, p. 146.
- Coberly, p. 151.
- Coberly, p. 103.
- Dittmar, Joseph J. (1990). Baseball's Benchmark Boxscores. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Co. pp. 142–44. ISBN 0-89950-488-4.