Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Negro League baseball history fact for today

Only four former Negro League pitchers have taken the mound in a World Series:  Satchel Paige (1948 Cleveland Indians), Don Newcombe (1949, 1955, and 1956 Brooklyn Dodgers), Joe Black (1952 and 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers), and Marshall “Sheriff” Bridges (1962 New York Yankees). Born on June 2, 1931 in Jackson, Mississippi, Bridges was a pitcher and first baseman for the Memphis Red Sox of the Negro American League.  The hard throwing left hander was signed by the New York Giants in 1953, but spent five seasons pitching in the minor leagues before his Major League debut with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1959.  After three seasons in the National League, two with Cardinals (1959 – 1960) and one with the Cincinnati Reds (1961), Bridges became the top relief pitcher for the 1962 New York Yankees.  In 52 relief appearances, he won eight games while saving 18 others and helped the Yankees capture the American League pennant.  The “Sheriff” made two appearances in the World Series pitching a total of three and one third innings as the Yankees defeated the San Francisco Giants to win the World Championship.  After being shot by a woman in a bar during spring training the next season, Bridges fell out of favor with the Yankees.  Appearing in only 23 games in 1963, he was traded to the Washington Senators after the season.                     

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