George Daniel Crowe (March 22, 1921 – January 18, 2011) was a Major League first baseman. He attended Franklin High School in Franklin, Indiana, graduated from Indiana Central College, now the University of Indianapolis, in 1943 and played baseball and basketball. He was the first Indiana "Mr. Basketball". He was a first baseman with a nine-year career from 1952–1953, 1955–1961 and played for the Boston Braves, Milwaukee Braves, Cincinnati Redlegs and St. Louis Cardinals (all of the National League). Crowe hit 31 home runs in 1957, filling in most of the season for the injured Ted Kluszewski.
|Born: March 22, 1921|
|Died: January 18, 2011 (aged 89)|
Rancho Cordova, California
|April 16, 1952, for the Boston Braves|
|Last MLB appearance|
|April 30, 1961, for the St. Louis Cardinals|
|Runs batted in||299|
|Career highlights and awards|
Crowe also played with the Negro National League's (Rochester) New York Black Yankees in 1948, and played professional basketball for the barnstorming New York Renaissance Big Five (aka "Rens"). In 1947 Crowe played basketball for the integrated Los Angeles Red Devils, a team that also included future Brooklyn Dodger Jackie Robinson. In 1950, Crowe played baseball for the Hartford Chiefs, a minor league team in the Eastern League. He also played winter ball with the Cangrejeros de Santurce (Santurce Crabbers) of the Puerto Rico Professional Baseball League in the 1954-55 season where as a teammate of Willie Mays, Roberto Clemente, Buster Clarkson and Bob Thurman, Crowe formed part of the Escuadron Del Panico (Panic Squadron) which led the Crabbers to the league championship and eventually to win the Caribbean World Series.
He was elected to the National League All-Star team in 1958, although Crowe was not used in the All-Star Game. Coincidentally, the year before, fans of his team — the Cincinnati Redlegs (as the Reds were called at the time) — had been involved in a ballot stuffing campaign to put all of the team's regulars in the starting lineup. Ed Bailey, Johnny Temple, Roy McMillan, Don Hoak, Frank Robinson, Gus Bell and Wally Post had been "voted" into the lineup, but Crowe was beaten out in the final vote tally by future Cardinal teammate Stan Musial. Crowe set a record (later broken by Jerry Lynch and subsequently by Cliff Johnson) for most pinch-hit home runs in major league baseball history with 14.
When he switched fielding positions from first base to second base against the Chicago Cubs on the 14th of June, 1958, he completed a double play wearing his oversize "mitt". This led to a rule change that if a first baseman went to field at second or third base, they had to replace their "mitt" with a fielder's glove.
- Baseball Reference
- "Standout athlete persevered while facing prejudice". Daily Journal. January 21, 2011. Retrieved February 24, 2012.[permanent dead link]
- "Crowe: A determined man who didn't like talking about himself". Daily Journal. January 21, 2011. Retrieved February 24, 2012.[permanent dead link]
- "Crowe's life spanned racial change". Daily Journal. January 26, 2011. Archived from the original on July 14, 2012. Retrieved February 24, 2012.
- Preston, JG. "Left-handed throwing second basemen, shortstops and third basemen". prestonjg.wordpress.com. Retrieved 29 January 2017.
- Career statistics and player information from Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube Warning: Template:Baseballstats cube= parameter should be updated to a numeric value.
- Negro league baseball statistics and player information from Baseball-Reference (Negro leagues)
- George Crowe at Find a Grave