Dom DiMaggio

Dominic Paul DiMaggio (February 12, 1917 – May 8, 2009), nicknamed "The Little Professor", was an American Major League Baseball center fielder. He played his entire 11-year baseball career for the Boston Red Sox (1940–1953). He was the youngest of three brothers who each became major league center fielders, the others being Joe and Vince.

Dom DiMaggio
Dom DiMaggio 1947
Center fielder
Born: February 12, 1917
San Francisco, California
Died: May 8, 2009 (aged 92)
Marion, Massachusetts
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
April 16, 1940, for the Boston Red Sox
Last MLB appearance
May 9, 1953, for the Boston Red Sox
MLB statistics
Batting average.298
Home runs87
Runs batted in618
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Biography

An effective leadoff hitter, he batted .300 four times and led the American League in runs twice and in triples and stolen bases once each. He also led AL center fielders in assists three times and in putouts and double plays twice each; he tied a league record by recording 400 putouts four times, and his 1948 totals of 503 putouts and 526 total chances stood as AL records for nearly thirty years. His 1338 games in center field ranked eighth in AL history when he retired. His 34-game hitting streak in 1949 remains a Boston club record.

Dom DiMaggio 1950 Bowman
A 1950 Bowman Gum baseball card of Dom DiMaggio

He was the youngest of three brothers who each became major league center fielders: Joe was a star with the rival New York Yankees, and Vince played for five National League teams. The youngest of nine children born to Sicilian immigrants, Dom's small stature (5'9") and eyeglasses earned him the nickname "The Little Professor."[1]

After breaking into the minor leagues in 1937 with the San Francisco Seals of the Pacific Coast League, Dom DiMaggio's contract was purchased by the Red Sox following a 1939 season in which he batted .361; he hit .301 in his 1940 rookie season, becoming part of a .300-hitting outfield with Ted Williams and Doc Cramer. In both 1941 and 1942 he scored over 100 runs to finish third in the AL, and was among the league's top ten players in doubles and steals; he was named an All-Star both years. After missing three years serving in the Navy in World War II, he returned in 1946 with his best season yet, batting .316 to place fifth in the league, and coming in ninth in the MVP voting as Boston won its first pennant in 28 years. Batting third, he hit only .259 in the 1946 World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals, but was almost a Series hero for Boston. With two out in the eighth inning of Game 7, he doubled to drive in two runs, tying the score 3-3; but he pulled his hamstring coming into second base, and had to be removed for a pinch runner. The result was costly, as Harry Walker doubled to center field in the bottom of the inning, with Enos Slaughter scoring from first base in his famed "Mad Dash" to win the game and Series for St. Louis; had DiMaggio remained in the game, Walker's hit might have been catchable, or the outfielder's strong arm might have held Slaughter to third base. "If they hadn’t taken DiMaggio out of the game", Slaughter later said of his daring sprint, "I wouldn’t have tried it."

After an offensively disappointing year in 1947, DiMaggio rebounded in 1948 to score 127 runs (second in the AL) with career highs in doubles (40), runs batted in (87) and walks (101). His 503 putouts broke Baby Doll Jacobson's AL record of 484, set with the 1924 St. Louis Browns; his 526 total chances surpassed the league mark of 498 shared by Sam Rice of the 1920 Washington Senators and Jacobson. At the time, the marks ranked behind only Taylor Douthit's totals of 547 and 566 with the 1928 Cardinals in major league history; both records stood until 1977, when Chet Lemon of the Chicago White Sox recorded 512 putouts and 536 total chances. In 1949 DiMaggio batted .307 with 126 runs, and had his team-record 34-game hitting streak; ironically, the streak was ended on August 9 by an outstanding catch made by his brother Joe. That year he made 400 putouts for the fourth time, tying the AL record held by Sam West of the Senators and Browns; the mark was later tied by two other players before being broken by Lemon in 1985.

Dom DiMaggio at bat (cropped)
Dom at bat in the early 1950s

In 1950 DiMaggio led the AL in runs (131), triples (11) and stolen bases (15) while hitting a career-high .328. On June 30 he and Joe hit home runs while playing against one another, becoming the fourth pair of brothers to homer in the same game. Dom's stolen base total of 15 is the lowest stolen base total to lead either of the Major Leagues in a single season.[2] In August of that year, he had 53 base hits, tying a club record with teammate Johnny Pesky.

He again led the league in runs (113) in 1951, when he had a 27-game hitting streak from May 12 to June 7. He retired in May 1953, after appearing in only three games that year as a pinch hitter, with a .298 batting average, 1680 hits, 308 doubles, 57 triples, 87 home runs, 1046 runs and 618 RBI in 1399 games. He was selected an All-Star seven times (1941–42, 1946, 1949–52). His career average of 2.98 chances per game remains the record for AL outfielders.

DiMaggio enjoyed a close friendship with teammates Ted Williams, Bobby Doerr, and Johnny Pesky, which was chronicled in David Halberstam's book The Teammates. After retiring, he became a plastics manufacturer in New England. He was inducted into the Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame in 1995. He and his wife Emily, whom he married in 1948, had two sons (Paul and Peter), a daughter (Emily), and several grandchildren (Alex, Andrew, Charlotte, Margel, Peter, and Anna).[3]

In an article in 1976 in Esquire magazine, sportswriter Harry Stein published an "All Time All-Star Argument Starter", consisting of five ethnic baseball teams. Dom DiMaggio was the left fielder on Stein's Italian team.

In 1978 he was named a member of the Board of Trustees at Saint Anselm College in Goffstown, New Hampshire.[4] He served under Presidents Father Peter and Father Jonathan DeFelice and helped lead Saint Anselm College through four decades of expansion; he was awarded an honorary degree in 1999.

Writer David Halberstam described Dom as "probably the most underrated player of his day."[5]

Death

DiMaggio died on May 8, 2009 at his home in Marion, Massachusetts.[6] He was 92 years old and had been suffering from pneumonia.[7]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Dom DiMaggio Dies at 92; Played in His Brother's Shadow", May 8, 2009, New York Times
  2. ^ The editors of the Sporting News (1992). Baseball A Doubleheader Collection of Facts, Feats, & Firsts. St. Louis, Mo.: The Sporting News Publishing Co. ISBN 0-88365-785-6..
  3. ^ "Red Sox great Dom DiMaggio dies".
  4. ^ College, Saint Anselm. "Page Not Found - 404 Error". www.anselm.edu.
  5. ^ "Former Red Sox star Dom DiMaggio dies at 92". The Boston Globe. May 8, 2009.
  6. ^ "Former Red Sox great Dom DiMaggio dies at 92". Associated Press. 8 May 2009.
  7. ^ "Former Red Sox star Dom DiMaggio dies at 92".

External links

1940 Boston Red Sox season

The 1940 Boston Red Sox season was the 40th season in the franchise's Major League Baseball history. The Red Sox finished fourth in the American League (AL) with a record of 82 wins and 72 losses.

1941 Boston Red Sox season

The 1941 Boston Red Sox season was the 41st season in the franchise's Major League Baseball history. The Red Sox finished second in the American League (AL) with a record of 84 wins and 70 losses. The team featured five future Hall of Famers: player-manager Joe Cronin, Bobby Doerr, Jimmie Foxx, Lefty Grove, and Ted Williams.

1942 Boston Red Sox season

The 1942 Boston Red Sox season was the 42nd season in the franchise's Major League Baseball history. The Red Sox finished second in the American League (AL) with a record of 93 wins and 59 losses.

1947 Boston Red Sox season

The 1947 Boston Red Sox season was the 47th season in the franchise's Major League Baseball history. The Red Sox finished third in the American League (AL) with a record of 83 wins and 71 losses.

1948 Boston Red Sox season

The 1948 Boston Red Sox season was the 48th season in the franchise's Major League Baseball history. The Red Sox finished second in the American League (AL) with a record of 96 wins and 59 losses, including the loss of a one-game playoff to the Cleveland Indians after both teams had finished the regular schedule with identical 96–58 records. The first Red Sox season to be broadcast on television, broadcasts were then alternated between WBZ-TV and WNAC-TV but with the same broadcast team regardless of broadcasting station.

1949 Boston Red Sox season

The 1949 Boston Red Sox season was the 49th season in the franchise's Major League Baseball history. The Red Sox finished second in the American League (AL) with a record of 96 wins and 58 losses. The Red Sox set a major league record which still stands for the most base on balls by a team in a season, with 835.

1950 Boston Red Sox season

The 1950 Boston Red Sox season was the 50th season in the franchise's Major League Baseball history. The Red Sox finished third in the American League (AL) with a record of 94 wins and 60 losses, four games behind the AL and World Series champion New York Yankees. The team scored 1,027 runs, one of only six teams to score more than 1,000 runs in a season in the modern era (post-1900), and, along with the 1999 Cleveland Indians, are one of two teams to do so post-World War II. This was the last time that the Red Sox would win at least 90 games until their return to the World Series in 1967. The 1950 Red Sox compiled a .302 batting average, and are the last major league team to record a .300 team batting average.

1950 Major League Baseball season

The 1950 Major League Baseball season began on April 18 and ended on October 7, 1950 with the New York Yankees winning the World Series championship, over the Philadelphia Phillies. The only no-hitter of the season was pitched by Vern Bickford on August 11, in the Boston Braves 7–0 victory over the Brooklyn Dodgers. This season saw the first use of a bullpen car, by the Cleveland Indians.

1951 Boston Red Sox season

The 1951 Boston Red Sox season was the 51st season in the franchise's Major League Baseball history. The Red Sox finished third in the American League (AL) with a record of 87 wins and 67 losses.

1951 Major League Baseball All-Star Game

The 1951 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was the 18th playing of the midsummer classic between the all-stars of the American League (AL) and National League (NL), the two leagues comprising Major League Baseball. The game was held on July 10, 1951, at Briggs Stadium in Detroit, Michigan the home of the Detroit Tigers of the American League. The game resulted in the National League defeating the American League 8–3.

1952 Boston Red Sox season

The 1952 Boston Red Sox season was the 52nd season in the franchise's Major League Baseball history. The Red Sox finished sixth in the American League (AL) with a record of 76 wins and 78 losses.

1952 Major League Baseball All-Star Game

The 1952 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was the 19th playing of the midsummer classic between the all-stars of the American League (AL) and National League (NL), the two leagues comprising Major League Baseball. The game was held on July 8, 1952, at Shibe Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania the home of the Philadelphia Phillies of the National League. The game resulted in the National League defeating the American League 3–2 in 5 innings. It was the first All-Star Game—and to date, the only—to be called early due to rain.

Mickey Mantle was selected an All-Star for the first time, as was pitcher Satchel Paige, who a day before the game turned 46 years old. Neither appeared in the game.

Carlos May

Carlos May (born May 17, 1948) is an American former professional baseball player. May played ten seasons on three Major League Baseball (MLB) teams – the Chicago White Sox, New York Yankees, and California Angels. May also played four seasons in Japan for the Nankai Hawks, from 1978 through 1981. Primarily a left fielder, May batted left-handed and threw right-handed.

May worked for the United States Postal Service for 20 years as a mail carrier and clerk after playing baseball. He is currently a community relations representative for the White Sox. Carlos May is the younger brother of Lee May who played in the major leagues for eighteen seasons. In 1969, they were the first brothers to appear together in the same All Star Game who represented both the National League (NL) and the American League (AL); Joe and Dom DiMaggio appeared together multiple times as AL All-Stars.

Catfish Metkovich

George Michael "Catfish" Metkovich (October 8, 1920 — May 17, 1995) was an American outfielder and first baseman in Major League Baseball for the Boston Red Sox (1943–46), Cleveland Indians (1947), Chicago White Sox (1949), Pittsburgh Pirates (1951–53), Chicago Cubs (1953) and Milwaukee Braves (1954). Born in Angels Camp, California, to Croatian parents, Metkovich earned his nickname when he stepped on a catfish during a fishing trip and cut his foot; the injury and ensuing infection caused him to miss several games.Metkovich stood 6'1" (185 cm) tall, weighed 185 pounds (84 kg), and batted and threw left-handed. He helped the Red Sox win the 1946 American League pennant as the team's semi-regular right fielder. He appeared as a pinch hitter twice in the 1946 World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals. After flying out against Red Munger in Game 4, Metkovich's pinch double off Murry Dickson in the eighth inning of Game 7 helped the Red Sox come back from a 3–1 deficit. He scored the tying run on a double by Dom DiMaggio. But in the bottom of the same inning, the Cardinals broke the 3–3 tie on Enos Slaughter's "mad dash" to win the game and the world championship.

Metkovich's early career was spent in the American League, but his salad days were in the National League of the early 1950s. He finished 38th in voting for the 1952 National League Most Valuable Player, playing in 125 games and batting .271 with 101 hits, 7 home runs, and 41 RBIs. In his 10 MLB seasons he played in 1055 games, batting .261 with 934 hits, 47 home runs, and 373 RBIs.

Metkovich's playing career spanned 19 years (1939–57). He managed the San Diego Padres of the Pacific Coast League from May 16, 1957, through July 23, 1960, posting three winning records. He also briefly scouted for the expansion Washington Senators in the early 1960s.

Metkovich appeared in several Hollywood movies between 1949 and 1952. In "Three Little Words (1950)", he performed in several slapstick comedy scenes with Red Skelton.

He died in Costa Mesa, California, at the age of 74. In 2013, Metkovich was inducted posthumously in the Pacific Coast League Hall of Fame.

DiMaggio

DiMaggio is an Italian surname. People with this name include:

Three American-born brothers who all played in Major League Baseball as center fielders:

Dom DiMaggio (1917–2009), Boston Red Sox (1940 to 1953)

Joe DiMaggio (1914–1999), New York Yankees (1936 to 1951), elected to the Hall of Fame

Vince DiMaggio (1912–1986), several teams (1937 to 1946)

John DiMaggio (born 1968), American voice actor and comedian

Paul DiMaggio (born 1951), American sociologist

Peter DiMaggio, American engineer

Robin DiMaggio (born 1971), American drummer/percussionist

Isola delle Femmine

Isola delle Femmine (Sicilian: Isula dî Fìmmini) is an Italian town in North-Western Sicily, administratively part of the Metropolitan City of Palermo.

Despite its name, which can be translated in English as "The Island of Women", the town is located in mainland Sicily; the "island" the name refers to lies off the coast near the town, and is currently uninhabited. The etymology of the name is uncertain: a story claims the origins of the name from a females' only prison supposedly located in the island in the 16th century. A more reliable claim is that in the 19th century, a plague or sickness occurred in the town and the women and children were sent to the offshore island until it had passed.

Isola delle Femmine is a sister city with Pittsburg, California. The same fisherman statue that sits in Isola's Piazza di Pittsburg can be seen in downtown Pittsburg with the names of the first settlers from Isola to Pittsburg. Many of the families descended from the men on the plaque are extant in both cities, and their surnames can also be found in the records of the church at the center of town.

The parents of famed baseball players, Joe, Vince, and Dom DiMaggio were from Isola delle Femmine.

Johnny Lazor

John Paul Lazor (September 9, 1912 – December 9, 2002) was a backup outfielder in Major League Baseball who played from 1943 through 1946 for the Boston Red Sox (1943–1946). Born in King County, Washington, he batted left-handed and threw right-handed.

Lazor provided four years of good services for the Red Sox while left fielder Ted Williams and center fielder Dom DiMaggio were in the military service. His most productive season came in 1945, when he posted career-highs in games played (101), batting average (.310), runs scored (35), runs batted in (45), doubles (19) and home runs (5).

In a four-season career, Lazor was a .263 hitter with six home runs and 62 RBI in 224 games. He finished his professional career with the Portland Beavers of the Pacific Coast League, playing for them 280 games from 1947 to 1949.Lazor died in Renton, Washington at the age of 90. Until the Red Sox signed J.T. Snow, who wore 84 in 2006, Lazor had worn the highest number in Red Sox history. Lazor previously had worn number 82 in 1943. In a December 2001 interview, Lazor said he did not know why he wore the number and claimed he thought he wore the number 29. Snow was later surpassed by Alfredo Aceves in 2011 for highest number worn in Red Sox history (Aceves wore number 91).

National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame

The National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit institution honoring exceptional U.S. athletes of Italian descent. In 1977 George Randazzo created the Italian American Boxing Hall of Fame. This was as a means for raising money for local Catholic youth programs. After a successful year and dinner honoring 23 former Italian American boxing champions, Randazzo created the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame. The original location was in Elmwood Park, Illinois. The first induction ceremony honored Lou Ambers, Eddie Arcaro, Charley Trippi, Gino Marchetti, Dom DiMaggio, Joe DiMaggio, and Vince Lombardi. Since its founding in 1978, more than 230 Italian Americans have been inducted into this hall of fame.

A 44,000-square-foot (4,000 m²) building for the Hall of Fame and museum was on Taylor Street in the heart of Chicago's "Little Italy" until the location closed approximately January, 2019 after the landlord sold the building.

Slaughter's Mad Dash

The Mad Dash, or Slaughter's Mad Dash, refers to an event in the eighth inning of the seventh game of the 1946 World Series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Boston Red Sox.

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