David Pledger Madison
(The Freakin' Deacon)
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 3", Weight 190 lb.
- School Louisiana State University
- Debut September 26, 1950
- Final Game August 20, 1953
- Born February 1, 1921 in Brooksville, MS USA
- Died December 8, 1985 in Macon, MS USA
Dave Madison was a pitcher ten years (1941-1954); three in college (1941-1943); three in the Majors (1950 and 1952-1953) and ten in the minors (1947-1950 and 1953-1954), losing three years to the military. He graduated from high school in 1941 at age 18, where he starred in baseball. He then attended Louisiana State University from 1941 to 1943, where he starred in baseball and football and was a football teammate of Alvin Dark. He was drafted into the U.S. Army on in 1943 for World War II and discharged in 1945. He married Frances Patty on August 3, 1945. He returned to LSU and received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Forestry in 1947.
He was then signed by scout Atley Donald of the New York Yankees as an amateur free agent in 1947, and broke into Organized Baseball at age 26 with the Denver Bears of the Class A Western League. He then was with the Kansas City Blues in the AAA American Association from 1948 to 1950. On September 26, 1950, at 29 years of age, he broke into the big leagues with the Yankees. With one game and three innings of major league baseball under his belt, having remained in the Army Reserve, he was recalled as a First Lieutenant and sent to Korea.
On April 7, 1952 he was purchased by the St. Louis Browns from the Yankees. In a game between the Washington Senators and the Browns on June 3rd of that year, Madison had two hits in two at bats. Madison was relieved by Gene Bearden. Bearden pitched 4 1/3 scoreless innings and had one at bat with no hits. Satchel Paige pitched the final 5 2/3 innings and had three hits in three at bats. For the season, Madison's batting average was .105 (career .100) and Paige's was .128 (career .097.) On August 14th, he was traded by the Browns with Bud Black, Jim Delsing and Ned Garver to the Detroit Tigers for Dick Littlefield, Marlin Stuart, Don Lenhardt and Vic Wertz. Staying on with Detroit in 1953, he appeared in 73 games for the Browns and Tigers over the two seasons and played his final major league game on August 20, 1953 at age 32. He returned to the minors and faded out with the Buffalo Bisons of the International League (1953) and Sandersville in the Georgia State League (1954), ending his playing career at age 33.
He then managed in the minors in 1954 and 1955 and scouted for the New York Yankees (1956-1958), Baltimore Orioles (1965-1967), Oakland Athletics (1968-1974) and New York Mets (1974-1985). He discovered Glenn Abbott and Ronn Reynolds who were selected in their respective amateur drafts.
He had auburn hair and blue eyes, his ancestry was English-Irish and his principal hobbies were hunting and fishing. He died at age 64 at Noxubee General Hospital in Macon, MS after a lengthy illness and is buried at Brooksville Cemetery in Brooksville, MS.
Principal sources for Dave Madison include newspaper obituaries (OB), government Veteran records (VA,CM,CW), Stars & Stripes (S&S), Sporting Life (SL), The Sporting News (TSN), The Sports Encyclopedia:Baseball 2006 by David Neft & Richard Cohen (N&C), old Who's Who in Baseballs (1953) (WW), old Baseball Registers (1953) (BR) , old Daguerreotypes by TSN (none) (DAG), Stars&Stripes (S&S), The Baseball Necrology by Bill Lee (BN), Pat Doyle's Professional Ballplayer DataBase (PD), The Baseball Library (BL), Baseball in World War II Europe by Gary Bedingfield (GB) and and independent research by Walter Kephart (WK) and Frank Russo (FR) and others.