Carl Sawatski

Carl Ernest Sawatski (November 4, 1927 – November 24, 1991) was an American professional baseball player and executive. In the Major Leagues, he was a catcher for the Chicago Cubs (1948, 1950 and 1953), Chicago White Sox (1954), Milwaukee Braves (1957–58), Philadelphia Phillies (1958–59) and St. Louis Cardinals (1960–63). He also was an influential figure in minor league baseball.

Carl Sawatski
Carl Sawatski.jpg
Born: (1927-11-04)November 4, 1927
Shickshinny, Pennsylvania
Died: November 24, 1991(1991-11-24) (aged 64)
Little Rock, Arkansas
Batted: Left Threw: Right
MLB debut
September 29, 1948, for the Chicago Cubs
Last MLB appearance
September 29, 1963, for the St. Louis Cardinals
MLB statistics
Batting average.242
Home runs58
Runs batted in213
Career highlights and awards

A left-handed batter who threw right-handed, Sawatski the player stood 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m) (178 cm) tall and weighed 210 pounds (95 kg). The native of Shickshinny, Pennsylvania, played 11 seasons in MLB, appearing in 633 games. His career totals include 1,449 at bats, 133 runs, 351 hits, 46 doubles, five triples, 58 home runs, 213 runs batted in, two stolen bases and 191 walks, with a helped the Braves win the 1957 National League pennant. He batted .242.

Sawatski helped the Braves win the 1957 National League pennant, appearing in 58 games, 19 as a catcher (third-most among the club's backstops), and contributing six home runs to the Milwaukee cause. During the 1957 World Series against the New York Yankees, Sawatski had two appearances as a pinch hitter (Games 3 and 6) and struck out twice, but the Braves prevailed in seven games to win the world title.

Sawatski was a prodigious minor league hitter. He batted .352 and slugged 34 homers in the Class D North Atlantic League in 1947. Then, two seasons later, he led the Double-A Southern Association with 45 homers and batted .360, second in the league.[1] After his playing career ended, Sawatski served as the general manager of the Arkansas Travelers of the Double-A Texas League, a Cardinal affiliate, from 1967–75. He then was elected president of the Texas League itself and served in the post from 1976 until his 1991 death in Little Rock at the age of 64. During his presidency, the league prospered as part of the renaissance of minor league baseball that began in the 1980s.

In a 1976 Esquire magazine article, sportswriter Harry Stein published an "All Time All-Star Argument Starter", consisting of five ethnic baseball teams. Sawatski was the catcher on Stein's Polish team.


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Preceded by
Bobby Bragan
Texas League president
Succeeded by
Tom Kayser