Hugh Alexander (baseball)

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Hugh Alexander
Outfielder
Born: July 10, 1917
Buffalo, Missouri
Died: November 25, 2000(2000-11-25) (aged 83)
Bethany, Oklahoma
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
August 15, 1937, for the Cleveland Indians
Last MLB appearance
September 22, 1937, for the Cleveland Indians
MLB statistics
Batting average .091
Hits 1
Teams

Hugh Alexander (July 10, 1917 – November 25, 2000) was an American professional baseball player and scout. He was an outfielder during his brief playing career, but after he suffered a career-ending injury at the age of 20 he became one of baseball's most celebrated scouts.[1]

Born in Buffalo, Missouri, Alexander moved to Oklahoma with his family at the age of five.[2][3] Alexander the player stood 6 feet (1.8 m) tall, weighed 190 pounds (86 kg), and batted and threw right-handed. He spent 1936 and 1937 in the lower levels of the Cleveland Indians' farm system, and batted .348 and .344 in successive seasons.[4] Called to the Majors, he appeared in seven games for the 1937 Indians in August, getting one hit in eleven at bats (.091) and striking out five times.[2][3] He returned to the Indians for a single game in September as a pinch runner.[3] That offseason, while working his family's oil fields in Oklahoma, he lost his left hand in a drilling accident, ending his playing career.[2][3] Alexander then began a very short career as a bartender.[3]

In the aftermath of the accident, Alexander was immediately named a scout for the Indians; at 20, he was unusually young for the assignment and scouting jobs were at a premium during the height of The Great Depression.[1] But the first two players he signed for Cleveland became big-league All-Starspitcher Allie Reynolds and outfielder Dale Mitchell.[1] During a 64-year scouting career, working for the Indians, Chicago White Sox, Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers, Philadelphia Phillies and Chicago Cubs, Alexander earned the nickname "Uncle Hughie"[5] and would sign other stars, including Steve Garvey, Frank Howard, Davey Lopes, Bill Russell and Don Sutton for the Dodgers alone.[2]

In 1984 Alexander co-founded the "Scout of the Year Program", which recognised the best scouts in the country each year. Alexander was awarded "Scout of the Year" in 1996.[6] He retired in 1998, and died on November 25, 2000.[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Hugh Alexander, 83, a scout for the next stars of baseball, The New York Times, November 29, 2000.
  2. ^ a b c d McKenna, Brian. Early exits: the premature endings of baseball careers, Rowman & Littlefield, 2007, p. 211. ISBN 0-8108-5858-4
  3. ^ a b c d e f Bona, Marc (December 27, 2017). "After tragic accident, former Cleveland Indian Hugh Alexander became prolific scout". cleveland.com. Retrieved December 28, 2017.
  4. ^ Minor league record from Baseball Reference
  5. ^ The St. Petersburg Times, November 29, 2000
  6. ^ Rose, George (2004). One Hit Wonders: Baseball Stories. United States: Excel/Kaleidoscope. p. 212. ISBN 9780595318070.

External links[edit]