Philomena Gianfrancisco

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Philomena Gianfrancisco
Philomena Gianfrancisco.jpg
All-American Girls Professional Baseball League
Outfield
Born: (1923-04-20)April 20, 1923
Chicago, Illinois
Died: January 18, 1992(1992-01-18) (aged 68)
Chicago, Illinois
Batted: Left Threw: Right
Teams
Career highlights and awards
  • Women in Baseball – AAGPBL Permanent Display
    at Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum (1988)

Philomena Theresa Gianfrancisco [Zale] (April 20, 1923 – January 18, 1992) was an outfielder who played from 1945 through 1948 in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. Listed at 5 ft 2 in (1.57 m), 134 lb., she batted left-handed and threw right-handed.[1]

Born in Chicago, Illinois, Philomena Gianfrancisco had the longest name in league history. Nicknamed ״Phil״ or ״Frisco״ by her teammates, she joined the league in 1945 with the Grand Rapids Chicks, playing for them three years before joining the Racine Belles (1948).[2]

Her most productive season came in 1946, when she posted a career-best .226 batting average in 98 games, ranking eighth in runs batted in (53) and ninth in doubles (9), while tying for sixth in home runs (2).[3]

In 1947 she suffered a severe knee injury, which sidelined her for most of the season. She then underwent surgery to correct a major problem. In 1948 she came back and helped Racine to reach the postseason, appearing in a career-high 114 games while batting .204 with four homers and 45 RBI.

In 1949, Gianfrancisco left the league to marry boxing legend Tony Zale, a two-time world middleweight champion. She became his manager and booking agent for activities.[1]

She is part of Women in Baseball, a permanent display based at the Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York, which was unveiled in 1988 to honor the entire All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. She died four years later in her hometown of Chicago at the age of 68.[4]

Career statistics[edit]

Batting

GP AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB TB BB SO BA OBP SLG
265 877 87 180 23 5 6 94 73 231 106 88 .205 .318 .263

Fielding

GP PO A E TC DP FA
255 201 29 11 241 78 .954

[5]

Sources[edit]

  1. ^ a b "All-American Girls Professional Baseball League official website – Philomena Gianfrancisco entry". 
  2. ^ The Women of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League: A Biographical DictionaryW. C. Madden. Publisher: McFarland & Company, 2005. Format: Softcover, 295pp. Language: English. ISBN 0-7864-3747-2
  3. ^ All-American Girls Professional Baseball League Record BookW. C. Madden. Publisher: McFarland & Company, 2000. Format: Softcover, 294pp. Language: English. ISBN 978-0-7864-3747-4
  4. ^ The Chicago Tribune – Obituary
  5. ^ All-American Girls Professional Baseball League Record Book