Charlie Metro

Charlie Metro (born Charles Moreskonich; April 18, 1918 – March 18, 2011) was an American professional baseball player, manager, coach and scout. Notably, he was an outfielder for the Detroit Tigers and Philadelphia Athletics as well as the manager of the Chicago Cubs and Kansas City Royals of Major League Baseball. He adopted the name "Metro" from his father, Metro Moreskonich, a Ukrainian immigrant. Metro was born and grew up in Nanty Glo, Pennsylvania, graduating from Nanty Glo High School in 1937, and also worked in the coal mines there during breaks from school.[1] He threw and batted right-handed, stood 5 feet 11 inches (1.80 m) tall and weighed 178 pounds (81 kg).

Charlie Metro
Outfielder / Manager
Born: April 18, 1918
Nanty Glo, Pennsylvania
Died: March 18, 2011 (aged 92)
Buckingham, Virginia
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
May 4, 1943, for the Detroit Tigers
Last MLB appearance
August 5, 1945, for the Philadelphia Athletics
MLB statistics
Batting average.193
Home runs3
Runs batted in23
Games managed164
Win–Loss record62–102
Winning %.378
Teams
Major League Baseball

As manager

Career

At age 18, Metro attended a tryout camp for the St. Louis Browns, then bounced around in the minor leagues. In 1940, he joined the Texarkana Liners, then an independent baseball team but which became affiliated with the Detroit Tigers. Due to his light hitting ability, he was never able to become a full-time starter, although he did make the Tigers club out of spring training in 1943. He was released by the Tigers in 1944, partly because of his attempts to organize a players union.

The Philadelphia Athletics picked him up, and, under Connie Mack, Metro won "a shot" at starting center fielder, although his inability to hit consistently cost him this job.

In 171 major league games played, Metro was credited with 69 hits, with ten doubles, two triples and three home runs. Two of those blows came on consecutive days, June 23–24, 1945, against the New York Yankees' Jim "Milkman" Turner and Hank Borowy.[2] Overall, though, Metro hit a lowly .193 and collected 23 runs batted in.

In the closing weeks of 1945, Metro joined the Oakland Oaks of the Pacific Coast League, where in 1946, his last season as a full-time outfielder, he played under another Baseball Hall of Fame manager, Casey Stengel.

In 1947, he was hired as a player-manager by the Yankees' organization, and in the mid-1950s through 1961 he helmed Triple-A clubs for the Tigers and Baltimore Orioles. In 1962, he got his first big-league managing job with the Chicago Cubs as a member of their "College of Coaches." Metro succeeded Lou Klein as "head coach" on June 12. The head coach job was designed to rotate among several members of the College, but Metro stayed in the role for 112 games and the rest of the 1962 campaign. The Cubs won 43 and lost 69 (.384) under him, and finished ninth in the ten-team National League. Metro was fired after the season; then he joined the crosstown Chicago White Sox as a scout (1963–64) and coach (1965). In 1966 he returned to managing in the PCL with the St. Louis Cardinals' top affiliate, the Tulsa Oilers.

After one season, Metro resumed his scouting career. Bob Howsam, who owned the Triple-A Denver Bears when Metro managed them as a Tigers' affiliate in 1960–61, had hired Metro for the Cardinals' system at Tulsa in 1966. When Howsam took over as general manager of the Cincinnati Reds in 1967, he brought Metro with him as a top special assignments scout. Then, in 1968, Metro joined the front office of the expansion Kansas City Royals, where he had an active hand in the expansion draft.

He took over as manager when Joe Gordon resigned after only one season at the helm.[3] However, his stint there as manager was shorter than his Cubs tenure, lasting only 52 games (19–33, .365), being replaced by Bob Lemon on June 7.[4]

Metro went back to scouting for the Tigers and the Los Angeles Dodgers. Then followed coaching stints with the Oakland Athletics, and in 1984 he returned to the Dodgers as a scout.

After being dismissed by Los Angeles, Metro retired to his Denver ranch.

He died in Buckingham, Virginia where he lived, on March 18, 2011 from mesothelioma, a type of lung cancer.[5]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Charlie Metro, long-time baseball player, manager, coach and scout, passes away". Nanty Glo Home Page. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
  2. ^ Retrosheet: 1945 PHI A batting log for Charlie Metro
  3. ^ Ferguson, Lew (8 October 1969). "Charlie Metro named manager of Royals". The Day. p. 23. Retrieved 3 June 2010.
  4. ^ Blount, Jr., Roy (22 June 1970). "Tale of the Derailed Metro". Sports Illustrated. New York. 32 (25): 43. Archived from the original on September 29, 2013. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
  5. ^ Moss, Irv (23 March 2011). "Former Bears manager Metro dies at 91". The Denver Post. Retrieved 31 August 2012.

External links

1943 Detroit Tigers season

The 1943 Detroit Tigers season was a season in American baseball. The team finished fifth in the American League with a record of 78–76, 20 games behind the New York Yankees.

1944 Philadelphia Athletics season

The 1944 Philadelphia Athletics season involved the A's finishing 5th in the American League with a record of 72 wins and 82 losses.

1945 Philadelphia Athletics season

The 1945 Philadelphia Athletics season involved the A's finishing 8th in the American League with a record of 52 wins and 98 losses.

1947 New York Yankees season

The 1947 New York Yankees season was the team's 45th season in New York, and its 47th season overall. The team finished with a record of 97–57, winning their 15th pennant, finishing 12 games ahead of the Detroit Tigers. New York was managed by Bucky Harris. The Yankees played their home games at Yankee Stadium. In the World Series, they defeated the Brooklyn Dodgers in 7 games. It was the first ever season of the Yankees to be broadcast live on television with WABD providing the television broadcast feed to viewers in the city.

1950 St. Louis Cardinals season

The 1950 St. Louis Cardinals season was the team's 69th season in St. Louis, Missouri and its 59th season in the National League. The Cardinals went 78–75 during the season and finished 5th in the National League.

1953 Detroit Tigers season

The 1953 Detroit Tigers season was a season in American baseball. The team finished sixth in the American League with a record of 60–94, 40½ games behind the New York Yankees.

1954 Detroit Tigers season

The 1954 Detroit Tigers season was a season in American baseball. The team finished fifth in the American League with a record of 68–86, 43 games behind the Cleveland Indians.

1956 Detroit Tigers season

The 1956 Detroit Tigers season was a season in American baseball. The team finished fifth in the American League with a record of 82–72, 15 games behind the New York Yankees.

1957 Baltimore Orioles season

The 1957 Baltimore Orioles season involved the Orioles finishing 5th in the American League with a record of 76 wins and 76 losses.

1958 Baltimore Orioles season

The 1958 Baltimore Orioles season involved the Orioles finishing 6th in the American League with a record of 74 wins and 79 losses, 17.5 games behind the AL and World Series champion New York Yankees. The team was managed by Paul Richards, and played their home games at Baltimore's Memorial Stadium, which hosted the All-Star Game that season.

1962 Chicago Cubs season

The 1962 Chicago Cubs season was the 91st season of the Chicago Cubs franchise, the 87th in the National League and the 47th at Wrigley Field. In the second season under their College of Coaches, the Cubs finished ninth in the National League with a record of 59–103, 42½ games behind the NL Champion San Francisco Giants. The Cubs finished ahead of the expansion New York Mets and behind the expansion Houston Colt .45s in the NL's first-ever 162-game season.

1970 Kansas City Royals season

The 1970 Kansas City Royals season involved the Royals finishing fourth in the American League West with a record of 65 wins and 97 losses.

College of Coaches

The College of Coaches was an unorthodox strategy employed by the Chicago Cubs in 1961 and 1962. After the Cubs finished 60–94 in 1960, their 14th straight second-division finish, Cubs owner P. K. Wrigley announced in December 1960 that the Cubs would no longer have a manager, but would be led by an eight-man committee. The experiment was widely ridiculed in baseball circles, and was effectively ended in 1962 before being completely abandoned in 1965.

List of Chicago Cubs managers

The Chicago Cubs are a Major League Baseball team that plays in the National League (NL) Central Division. Since their inception as the White Stockings in 1876, the Cubs have employed 60 managers. The duties of the team manager include team strategy and leadership on and off the field. The Cubs have had 13 general managers. The general manager controls player transactions, hiring and firing of the coaching staff, and negotiates with players and agents regarding contracts. The first person to officially hold the title of general manager for the Cubs was Charles Weber, who assumed the title in 1934. The franchise's first manager was Baseball Hall of Famer Albert Spalding, who helped the White Stockings become the first champions of the newly formed National League.After co-managing with Silver Flint during the 1879 Chicago White Stockings season, Hall of Famer Cap Anson began an 18-year managerial tenure in 1880, the longest in franchise history. Under Anson, the team won five more NL pennants — in 1880, 1881, 1882, 1885 and 1886—tying the 1885 World Series and losing the 1886 World Series in the process. Anson won 1,283 games as the White Stockings' manager, the most in franchise history. After taking over for Hall of Fame manager Frank Selee in 1905, Frank Chance — another Hall of Famer — managed the team through the 1912 season. During his tenure, the franchise won four more NL pennants in 1906, 1907, 1908, and 1910, winning its only two World Series titles in 1907 and 1908 until 2016 Chance's .664 career winning percentage is the highest of any Cubs manager. After Chance, from 1913 through 1960, the Cubs employed nineteen managers, nine of which were inducted into the Hall of Fame. During this period, the Cubs won six more NL pennants, including three under manager Charlie Grimm. Split between Grimm's two managerial stints in the 1930s and 1940s, plus a brief appearance as manager in 1960, Grimm accumulated 946 career wins, second-most in franchise history behind Anson.Owner P. K. Wrigley then began experimenting with the managerial position and in December 1960, announced that Cubs would not have only one manager for the coming season. Instead, the team implemented a new managerial system known as the "College of Coaches". The system was meant to blend ideas from several individuals instead of relying on one manager. During its first year, the team rotated four different managers into the role: Vedie Himsl, Harry Craft, El Tappe and Lou Klein. The next year, under the guidance of Tappe, Klein and Charlie Metro, the Cubs lost a franchise-record 103 games. Bob Kennedy managed the team for the next three seasons until Hall of Famer Leo Durocher assumed the managerial role for the 1966 season, effectively ending the five-year-long "College of Coaches" experiment. During his first season as manager, Durocher's Cubs tied the franchise's 103-game loss record set four years earlier by the "College"; however, he maintained a winning record for the rest of his seven-year tenure.In the last 37 seasons since Durocher, the Cubs have had 22 managers. Jim Frey and Don Zimmer led the team to the National League Championship Series (NLCS) in 1984 and 1989, respectively. In both of those seasons, the team's manager won a Manager of the Year Award. Jim Riggleman managed the team for five years from 1995 through 1999, earning the team's first and only wild card playoff spot in 1998. Dusty Baker's Cubs lost in the 2003 NLCS during the first year of a four-year managing tenure. Baker's successor, Lou Piniella, led the team to two consecutive National League Central Division titles during his first two years with the team and was awarded the 2008 Manager of the Year Award. On July 20, 2010, Piniella announced his intention to retire as manager of the Cubs following the end of the season. However, on August 22, 2010, Piniella announced he would resign after that day's game with the Atlanta Braves, citing family reasons. Third base coach Mike Quade would finish the rest of the season as manager. The Cubs' current general manager is Jed Hoyer, who replaced Jim Hendry.On November 7, 2013, the Cubs hired Rick Renteria as their new manager. He replaced Dale Sveum. He was fired on October 31, 2014 as the team prepared to hire Joe Maddon.

List of Kansas City Royals managers

The Kansas City Royals are a franchise based in Kansas City, Missouri. They are members of the Central division of Major League Baseball's American League. The Royals franchise was formed in 1969.

There have been 19 managers for the Royals. Joe Gordon became the first manager of the Kansas City Royals in 1969, serving for one season. Bob Lemon became the first manager who held the title of manager for the Royals for more than one season. Ned Yost has managed more games than any other Royals manager and as many seasons as Dick Howser and Tony Muser. Whitey Herzog, Jim Frey, Howser, and Ned Yost are the only managers to have led the Royals into the playoffs. Three Royals managers—Gordon, Lemon, and Herzog—have been inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame;In 1970, Gordon was replaced with Charlie Metro. The Royals made their first playoff appearance under Herzog. Four managers have led the Royals into the postseason. Dick Howser led the Royals to their first World Series Championship in 1985. Ned Yost led the Royals into two World Series appearances, in the 2014 World Series, and a Win in the 2015 World Series. Frey, led the Royals to One world series appearance in the 1980 World Series. The highest winning percentage of any manager who managed at least one season was Herzog, with a percentage of .574. The lowest percentage was Bob Schaefer in 2005, although he managed for only 17 games. The lowest percentage of a manager with at least one season with the Royals was Buddy Bell, the manager from 2005 through the 2007 season with a percentage of .399.

The highest win total for a Royals manager is held by Yost, who also holds the record for losses. Tony Peña became the first Royals manager to win the Manager of the Year award, in 2003. The current manager of the Royals is Ned Yost. He was hired on May 13, 2010 after Trey Hillman was fired.

Raelee Frazier

Raelee Frazier is a Denver sculptor who specializes in casting the hands of sports heroes in bronze.

Frazier worked as a modelmaker for museums, making representations of historic figures and scientific materials. When the Colorado Rockies baseball franchise came to Denver in 1980 a local restaurant asked her to create a display of baseball-related artifacts. She had made life castings for museum clients, including the Smithsonian, so when she was introduced to Charlie Metro, former major league player, she asked if she could cast his hands holding a bat. Metro then collaborated with Frazier to identify 33 baseball players to contribute to a commemorative series of bronze hands holding a baseball bat. Each sculpture in this Hitter's Hands series includes its subjects signature on the bat, the base and a certificate.

Subsequently, Frazier branched out to depict pitchers hands holding a ball. She has also cast the hands of football quarterbacks, golfers and mountaineer Sir Edmund Hillary.

Her cast of the hands of Ted "Double Duty" Radcliffe toured the USA in 2005 in an exhibit entitled Shades of Greatness sponsored by the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.

Texarkana Liners

The Texarkana Liners were a minor league baseball team that played in the East Texas League from 1937 to 1940. The club was based in the American city of Texarkana, Texas and was the cities first professional baseball team since 1929, when the Texarkana Twins played.

The team featured numerous notable managers and players. Bill Windle, Ed Hock and Dolly Gray, who each had major league experience, managed the team at different points. Gray, a pitcher, won 111 games in 10 big league seasons. Outfielders Buck Frierson and Culley Rikard played for the team in 1937. Frierson returned in 1938 and played alongside pitcher Vallie Eaves. Frierson came back from 1939 as well. In 1940, outfielder Charlie Metro played for the team.

Twin Falls Cowboys

The Twin Falls Cowboys were a Class C minor league baseball team from 1939 to 1942 and 1946 to 1951 in the Pioneer League. Their affiliation was with the Seattle Rainiers in 1939, and later the New York Yankees from 1946 to 1951. The Cowboys played at Jaycee Field in Twin Falls, Idaho, located in the northeast corner of the city's Harmon Park.

Vancouver Mounties

The Vancouver Mounties were a high-level minor league baseball club based in Vancouver, British Columbia, that played in the Pacific Coast League (PCL) from 1956–62 and 1965–69. Its home field was Capilano Stadium. During the Mounties' first two seasons, 1956–57, the PCL still was a member of an experimental organized baseball ranking, the Open Classification, as it made a bid for Major League status. However, in 1958 the PCL reverted to Triple-A when the Dodgers and Giants moved to California.

With their two terms during the 1950s and 1960s, Mounties were the first and second of Vancouver's three Triple-A baseball teams. The city had previously hosted numerous clubs at lower levels, including the Horse Doctors (1905; 1907), Beavers (1908–17 and 1922, although the team was alternatively known as the "Champions" and "Bees" in 1912–13 and 1915), Maple Leafs (1937) and Capilanos (1939–42; 1946–54). The Capilanos, owned by Seattle brewer Emil Sick, were a Western International League farm club of Sick's PCL Seattle Rainiers and named after his Vancouver brewery. Sick also built Capilano Stadium, which opened in 1951.

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