Saturday, June 13, 2009

1954 Bowman #31 "Smoky" Burgess

Random item won from eBay for a reasonable winning bid while trying to stay awake during the recent West Coast road trip . . . This is my first 1954 Bowman Phillies card . . .

Forrest Harrill "Smoky" Burgess was acquired by the Phillies from the Reds in December 1951 in a 6-player trade that sent Dick Sisler to Cincinnati. He was the Phillies regular catcher in 1952, 1953 and 1954. Smoky had a career year for the Phils in 1954, hitting .368 (although he didn't have enough plate appearances to qualify for the NL title) and attending his first NL All-Star Game. He played 7 games for the Phils in 1955 before getting traded back to the Cincinnati Reds on April 30th. In total, Smoky was named to 6 NL All-Star teams with the Phils, the Reds and the Pirates.

Considered one of the best pinch-hitters of his day, Smoky played 18 seasons in the Majors before retiring after the 1967 season.

Did You Know?: On May 26, 1959, while with the Pirates, Smoky Burgess was the catcher for Harvey Haddix when Kitten threw his 12 perfect innings only to lose in the 13th.


Pop-Pop said...

A sad day when Sisler went to the Reds

Jim said...

Almost as sad as when Bob Dernier was traded to the Cubbies.