Harry Fanok

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Harry Fanok
Born: (1940-05-11) May 11, 1940 (age 77)
Whippany, New Jersey
Batted: Switch Threw: Right
MLB debut
April 16, 1963, for the St. Louis Cardinals
Last MLB appearance
May 3, 1964, for the St. Louis Cardinals
MLB statistics
Win–loss record 2–1
Earned run average 5.40
Innings 3313

Harry Michael Fanok III (born May 11, 1940) is a retired American professional baseball player, a right-handed pitcher who was nicknamed "The Flame Thrower" for his blazing fastball. Fanok made 16 appearances, all in relief, for the 1963–64 St. Louis Cardinals of Major League Baseball, but he sustained a career-shortening injury to his throwing arm in August 1963 while pitching for the Triple-A Atlanta Crackers. He was born in the Whippany section of Hanover Township, New Jersey to a Ukrainian-American family.[1]

The 6 ft (1.8 m), 180 lb (82 kg) Fanok signed with St. Louis in 1959 after attending what is now the Morristown-Beard School and Hanover Park High School, where he was a baseball standout. After four seasons in minor league baseball, originally as a third baseman before converting to pitching, he began the 1963 season as a member of the MLB Cardinals' pitching staff. He stayed with them for almost two months and 12 games played, fashioning a 2–1 record and recording one save, with 25 strikeouts in 2523 innings pitched.

But Fanok allowed 21 bases on balls and 24 hits, and was told to change his customary three-quarters throwing motion to a straight overhand delivery by Cardinal manager Johnny Keane.[2] Sent back to Triple-A Atlanta to find his rhythm, Fanok pitched well — striking out 146 batters in 127 innings[3] — but suffered his arm injury late in the season. He would make only four more appearances in the Majors, for the 1964 Cardinals, and he retired from baseball after the 1967 campaign.

All told, Fanok struck out 35 batters in 3313 major league innings, allowing 29 hits and 24 walks. He returned to New Jersey after his playing days but eventually settled in Chardon, Ohio.[2]


  1. ^ "Harry Fanok | Society for American Baseball Research". sabr.org. Retrieved 2016-02-11. 
  2. ^ a b Harry Fanok at the SABR Bio Project, by Harry Fanok and Rory Costello, retrieved November 16, 2013
  3. ^ "Harry Fanok Minor & Winter Leagues Statistics & History". baseball-reference.com. sports-reference.com. Retrieved November 20, 2015. 

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