Sammy White (baseball)

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Sammy White
Samuel Charles White.jpg
White in 1952
Catcher
Born: (1927-07-07)July 7, 1927
Wenatchee, Washington
Died: August 5, 1991(1991-08-05) (aged 64)
Princeville, Hawaii
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
September 26, 1951, for the Boston Red Sox
Last MLB appearance
August 23, 1962, for the Philadelphia Phillies
MLB statistics
Batting average .262
Home runs 66
Runs batted in 421
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Sammy Charles White (July 7, 1927 – August 5, 1991) was a Major League Baseball catcher and right-handed batter who played with the Boston Red Sox (1951–59), Milwaukee Braves (1961) and Philadelphia Phillies (1962). He was a solid defensive catcher, with a good arm and the ability to get the most out of a Boston pitching staff that included Mel Parnell, Ellis Kinder, Bill Monbouquette, Mike Fornieles and Frank Sullivan.

White was born in Wenatchee, Washington. A college baseball player[1] and All-American college basketball player at the University of Washington, he signed his first professional baseball contract with the Seattle Rainiers of the Pacific Coast League in 1949. After the 1949 minor league season ended, the Minneapolis Lakers asked White to join their National Basketball Association team. But the Red Sox, who had acquired White's contract during 1949, were furious and prevented White from doing that.

An All-Star in 1953, White enjoyed his best season with the bat in 1954, hitting .282 with 14 home runs and 75 runs batted in (RBIs). In a May 1, 1955, game against the Cleveland Indians, White ruined Bob Feller's no-hitter with a single in the 7th inning.[2] Feller posted a 2–0 shutout, and set a major league record with his 12th one-hitter in that game. On June 24, 1955, Chicago White Sox shortstop Chico Carrasquel embarrassed White by catching him off second base in the ninth inning with the hidden ball trick. Chicago won the game 3–2.

After nine productive years in Boston, White was traded to the Cleveland Indians just before the outset of the 1960 season. But White balked at the trade (even though Cleveland was a pennant contender and the Red Sox were an also-ran at the time) and retired, sitting out the season. Granted his release, he played for the Braves in 1961, and finished his career with Philadelphia one year later, playing for a former Boston teammate, skipper Gene Mauch. In eleven seasons, he was a career .262 hitter with 66 homers and 421 RBIs in 1043 games.

During his career with the Red Sox, White was one of the players featured in the Norman Rockwell painting The Rookie. He also opened a bowling alley, "Sammy White's Brighton Bowl", a few miles from Fenway Park, and became a professional bowler. Then, after baseball, White moved to Hanalei, Hawaii, where he became a professional golfer for the "Princeville" organization. He died in Princeville, Hawaii, at the age of 64.

Highlights
  • All-Star (1953)
  • Became the only 20th-century player to score three runs in one inning (against the Detroit Tigers, on June 18, 1953, when the Red Sox scored a modern major league record 17 runs in one inning)[3]
  • Caught Mel Parnell's no-hitter on July 14, 1956[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "University of Washington Baseball Players Who Made It to a Major League Baseball Team". Baseball-Almanac.com. Archived from the original on 2012-08-21. Retrieved 21 August 2012. 
  2. ^ "Cleveland Indians 2, Boston Red Sox 0 (1)". Retrosheet. May 1, 1955. 
  3. ^ "Boston Red Sox 23, Detroit Tigers 3". Retrosheet. June 18, 1953. 
  4. ^ "Boston Red Sox 4, Chicago White Sox 0". Retrosheet. July 14, 1956. 

Further reading[edit]

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