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and Hopeful Rookies 1950s Leading Players and Hopeful Rookies 1950s Leading Players

For those of us who loved playing the game of baseball as a youngster during the early 1950s, hanging out at a major league baseball game was heaven. And, although those New York Yankees kept winning World Series, 1949-1953, we still loved our hometown teams.

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Early 1950s

Leading Baseball Players

George Kell, Herm Wehmeier, Bob Kuzava, Morrie Martin, Frank House and Lloyd Merriman,


Hopeful Rookies

Frank House, Bill Jennings, and Earl Mossor 

Leading Players


George Kell, Third Baseman Detroit Tigers . George Kell is well-regarded by Tigers fans of this era. His pleasant personality showed throughout his major league playing days 1943-1957 and his hard work defensively and offensively put him into the Baseball Hall of Fame. 1952 Who’s Who states “George Kell (B & T Right, 5 ft 9, 180 lbs) Star third baseman is the highest price Tiger infielder since Hank Greenberg. Kell has hit over .300 for 5 consecutive seasons with Detroit. Last year he dropped to .319 and drove in only 59 runs – but there’s no discounting his value.”


Herman Wehmeier, Cincinnati Reds Pitcher RH. The 6 ft 3 inches, 200 pounds was a high school phoneme in football and baseball for Western Hills High School in his hometown of Cincinnati prior for giving it a go to trying out for baseball with the Redlegs of Cincinnati. His pitching record of 54 consecutive wins in high school and Junior American Legion baseball is most impressive. From 1948 thru 1950 the fastball throwing Herm Wehmeier won 11, 11 and 10 games for a lousy Cincinnati team that won only 64, 62 and 66 games. Our old copy of the 1952 Who’s Who Magazine reads “Herman Wehmeier, the high-powered righty has everything to make him great – except good fortune. He loses the close one,  his mates don’t hit for him – and last season he was on the injured list too. Maybe he will get the jinxes under control.


Bob Kuzava, Pitcher Cleveland Indians, Chic White Sox, Washington Senators 1946-1951, NY Yankees Pitcher. Nicknamed “Sarge” after he returned with that rank from World War II, and  because he stood tall at 6 feet 2 inch. 1950 Who’s Who reads – “Bob Kuzava, the young lefty in his freshman, big time year last season gave promise of stardom. He won 10, lost 6, though out for a while with injuries. He wiffed 6 Red Sox in succession in one game to equal an AL record.” (6 strikeouts in a row tied a league record). notes - After being sent to the NY Yankees in the middle of June 1951, Bob Kuzava filled a needed niche for Casey Stengel’s Bronx Bombers from mid-1951 thru 1954 and played a huge role as a reliever as the Yankees won the 1951 and 1952 World Series.  


Morris Martin, Pitcher Philadelphia Athletics. Any pitcher at this level of play excels on the pitching mound and Morrie Martin was one of the top major league starters. He pitched in the ML from 1949, 1951-59 for various teams. 1952 Who’s Who Magazine states this about his rookie season with Connie Mack and his Philadelphia A’s. “Morris Martin (B & T left, 6 ft, 180) Working his first complete major league season last year (1951) he was a standout pitcher. Beat every team in the circuit at least once; had an 11-4 record.”    


Lloyd Merriman, Outfielder Cincinnati Reds. He was a starting outfielder for Cincinnati from 1949-1951 then proudly served in US military for  full years before returning to the Reds. The 1952 Who’s Who Magazine states this “Lloyd Merriman (B & T Left, Ht 6 ft, Wt 195). A solid outfielder who hits in streaks. Was in stride the last month of 1951 – but may with Uncle Sam this year.”


1950s Rookies

Frank House, Bill Jennings, Earl Mossor


Frank House, Catcher Detroit Tigers (Bats LH T RH) He played part time with Detroit in 1950 and ’51, and took over the Tigers regular catching duty starting in 1954 and put together solid defensive stats, including .992 percentage in 114 games in ’54 and in .987 in 102 games in 1955 and .986 in 94 games in and a robust .997 in 106 games in ’57. Frank House was a noted clutch hitter. He blasted a career high 15 homers in 1955.

Listed by the 1952 Who’s Who under Rookies it states – Henry House the $70,000 bonus catcher suffered a spinal ailment while with Toledo last season. Red Rolfe (1952 Detroit manager) says he (Frank House) will yet pay dividends.”


Bill Jennings, Infielder St. Louis Browns 1951. Our old copy of the 1952 Who’s Who shows a Bill Jennings photo along with these words “Bill Jennings – another 1951 freshman who looms large in Rogers Hornsby (ST L Browns Manager and Hall of Fame second baseman) rebuilding program. Didn’t do much hitting in 64 games last year (1951), but showed lots of infield defensive skills.”


Earl Mossor, Pitcher Brooklyn Dodgers 1952 Who’s Who states “Earl Mossor (B left, T right, Ht 6’ 1”, Wt 175. Was with St. Paul ’51. Had trouble with his arm last year. Pitched only 73 innings. This is his second trial.”


Baseball Historian Archives Page 150



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