Saul Rogovin

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Saul Rogovin
Saul Rogovin 1953.png
Rogovin in 1953
Pitcher
Born: (1922-03-24)March 24, 1922
Brooklyn, New York
Died: January 23, 1995(1995-01-23) (aged 72)
New York City, New York
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
April 28, 1949, for the Detroit Tigers
Last MLB appearance
June 19, 1957, for the Philadelphia Phillies
MLB statistics
Win–loss record 48–48
Earned run average 4.06
Strikeouts 388
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Saul Walter Rogovin (March 24, 1922 – January 23, 1995) was an American professional baseball player.

Rogovin was a pitcher over parts of 8 seasons (1949–57), with the Detroit Tigers, Chicago White Sox, Baltimore Orioles, and Philadelphia Phillies. In 1951, he led the American League with a 2.78 ERA. For his major league career, he compiled a 48–48 record in 150 appearances, with a 4.06 ERA, 10 shutouts, and 388 strikeouts.[1]

Early and personal life[edit]

Rogovin was born in Brooklyn, New York, and was Jewish.[2] His parents were Jacob and Bessie Rogovin.[3]

He played infielder at Abraham Lincoln High School. He tried out for the Dodgers, but was not signed.[4]

He married Doreen Lipsit at Rodeph Shalom in New York on January 30, 1955.[3]

Minor league career[edit]

Rogovin played Class D ball in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania for the Beaver Falls Bees for $60 ($1,000 in current dollar terms) a month in 1941.[5] Umpire Dolly Stark saw Rogovin play for a corporate team in 1941 and got him a tryout with the Giants.[3] He played for a short time with their Jersey City Giants affiliate in Jersey City before his contract was sold to the Chattanooga Lookouts.[3] It was their coach, Red Lucas, who put Rogovin in as a pitcher.[3] He pitched a shutout game against the Birmingham Barons to close the 1945 season.[3] He also played for the Pensacola Fliers and Buffalo Bisons (for whom he was 13-7 in 1948, and 16-6 in 1949).[4][6]

Major league career[edit]

Before the 1944 season, Rogovin signed as a free agent with the Washington Senators.

Prior to the start of the 1947 season, he was sent by the Senators to the Detroit Tigers.[7] During spring training, he began to experience some soreness in his pitching arm. That year Rogovin was 2–1 with a 4.50 ERA while pitching in 11 games.[4]

He made his debut in April 1949 at the age of 27.[2]

Rogovin hit a grand slam in 1950 off Eddie Lopat of the New York Yankees.[8] The next grand slam by a Jewish pitcher was not hit until Jason Marquis hit one in 2008.[9]

On May 15, 1951, he was traded by the Tigers to the Chicago White Sox for Bob Cain.[10] He led the American League with a 2.78 ERA in 1951, while playing for Detroit and Chicago.[11] He was 4th in the league in hits allowed per 9 IP (7.85), and 5th in complete games (17) and shutouts (3).[2] He had 12 wins and eight losses that year, with seven losses by one run and one by two runs.[3] He at times fell asleep on the bench; according to a later article in the Washington Post, he suffered from a sleep disorder.[3]

In 1952 he was 14-9 and had a .609 win-loss percentage and struck out 14 Red Sox players in a 15-inning game.[11][12] He was 7th in the league in innings (231.7; a career high), 8th in shutouts (3), 9th in games started (30) and wins (14), and 10th in strikeouts (121).[2] He came in 27th in MVP voting.[2]

On December 10, 1953, he was traded by the White Sox with Rocky Krsnich and Connie Ryan to the Cincinnati Reds for Willard Marshall.[1] In 1954, he pitched for the Havana Sugar Kings, going 8-8 with a 3.71 ERA.[6] In December 1954 he was sent from the Cincinnati Redlegs to the Baltimore Orioles.[10]

On July 9, 1955, he was released by the Orioles and signed as a free agent with the Philadelphia Phillies, where he had an ERA of 3.08 and a 5–3 win-loss record.[4] Rogovin said: "Somebody cracked that I now throw with three speeds 'slow, slower and stop.' But who cares, as long as I'm winning? They can have the fastball."[3] He played his last major league game in June 1957, at 35 years of age, retiring due to a sore arm.[2][12]

Through 2010, he was 10th all-time in career wins (directly behind Larry Sherry) among Jewish major league baseball players.[13]

After baseball[edit]

After baseball, Rogovin became a liquor salesman.[3] He said "Being out of baseball hurt me inside, hurt me so bad that I couldn't go to a game for years. I wanted to go visit my old team, keep up my baseball contacts, but I couldn't."[3]

He then decided to resume the college studies he had begun more than 30 years earlier.[12] He was 51 years old when he started studying for a degree in Education at Manhattan Community College. Upon his submission of his application to Manhattan Community College, he was told by a dean that, regardless of his age, he would be required to take a physical education course.[12][3] In response, he pulled out a bubble-gum card with his picture on it, and asked if his Major League career would fulfill the physical education requirement.[12][3] The dean decided that would be fine.[12][3]

He transferred to and graduated from City College, with a degree in English literature.[12][3]

He then began teaching English and literature in the New York City high schools at age 56.[12] He taught first at Hughes High School in New York, and then at Eastern District High School in Brooklyn the last eight years of his teaching career.[3][12][11]

He died on January 23, 1995, at the age of 71 from bone cancer, and is buried at Beth David Cemetery in Elmont, New York.[3][2][12]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Saul Rogovin Statistics". The Baseball Cube. Retrieved May 30, 2007. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g Saul Rogovin Stats | Baseball-Reference.com
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Saul Rogovin | Society for American Baseball Research
  4. ^ a b c d Saul Rogovin at the SABR Bio Project, by Ralph Berger, retrieved May 30, 2007
  5. ^ Ribalow, Harold. "Jewish Baseball Stars: Saul Ribalow, Power Pitcher". Retrieved May 30, 2007. 
  6. ^ a b Saul Rogovin Minor Leagues Statistics & History | Baseball-Reference.com
  7. ^ Ribalow, Harold. "Jewish Baseball Stars: Saul Ribalow, Power Pitcher". Retrieved May 30, 2007. 
  8. ^ "Plenty of highlights for Jewish Major Leaguers in '08". New Jersey Jewish News. October 9, 2008. Retrieved May 22, 2009. 
  9. ^ Carrie Muskat. "Marquis simply grand in win over Mets". Chicago.cubs.mlb.com. Archived from the original on September 26, 2008. Retrieved February 1, 2011. 
  10. ^ a b "Saul Rogovin Statistics". Sports Reference, Inc. Retrieved May 30, 2007. 
  11. ^ a b c "Jewish Sports Hall of Fame: Saul Rogovin". Suffolk Y JCC. Retrieved February 24, 2014. 
  12. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Saul Rogovin, 71, A Former Pitcher - The New York Times
  13. ^ "Career Pitching Leaders". Career Leaders. Jewish Major Leaguers. Retrieved February 10, 2011. 

External links[edit]