Lou Fitzgerald

From BR Bullpen

H. Louis Fitzgerald

  • Bats Left (listed as switch-hitter in the Sooner State League in 1952 according to the 1953 Baseball Guide), Throws Right
  • Height 6' 0", Weight 150 lb.

BR minors page

Biographical Information[edit]

Lou Fitzgerald played 13 years in the minors and managed 20 years on the farm, with some overlap. He hit for high averages in some high-offense leagues, drew lots of walks and scored plenty of runs. He hit very few homers (9 in his career) and only got a brief glance at the higher minors, struggling. He managed two AA pennant winners.

Lou broke in with the 1942 Americus Pioneers, hitting .240 with 7 RBI. In 1946, he played for the Pensacola Fliers briefly but spent most of the year with the Natchez Giants, batting .357/~.466/.469. He was second in the Evangeline League in average behind Michael Conroy, scored 115 runs (second to Conroy), had 13 triples (tied for second behind Len Pecou and drew league-best 97 walks while playing a solid third base (.955 fielding).

In 1947, Fitzgerald split the year between Pensacola (.264, 12 RBI) and the Marshall Comets (.330, 54 RBI). The next season, Lou looked lost in his only glance at AA, batting .171 for the Dallas Eagles. He also appeared on the Texarkana Bears, hitting .336 with 3 HR and 64 RBI.

Lou slipped to .277 in 1949 with Texarkana, then in 1950 hit .274/~.421/.329 in his last season in which he did not manage. He walked 135 times, easily leading the Big State League and scored 138 times, leading the loop. He split time that year between second and third base.

In 1951, Fitzgerald won the Sooner State League batting title as player-manager for the Shawnee Hawks. He hit .379 with 2 HR and 105 RBI. As it was a high-offense league, he did not finish in the top 10 in RBI. Lou split 1952 between Shawnee (.350/~.496/.415, 51 runs, 52 walks in 53 games) and the Longview Cherokees (.255/~.322/.303), managing both clbus as well while with them. Fitzgerald was a candidate to repeat as Sooner State League batting champ when he switched clubs.

Lou was with three teams in 1953. He began as second baseman and manager of the Augusta Rams the year Hank Aaron and four other players integrated the South Atlantic League. Fitzgerald hit .281/~.355/.305 in 42 games. In 23 contests for the Kingsport Cherokees, he hit .271/~.346/.302. He also appeared 11 times for the Bryan Majors with a .213/~.315/.243 batting line.

In 1954, Fitzgerald hit .318 with 74 RBI as player-manager of the Port Arthur Sea Hawks. The next year, in the same role, he contributed a .247 average. He barely played in 1956 with the Victoria Eagles, mostly managing at age 35.

In 1957, Lou finished his playing career with the Pensacola Dons. He played 26 games and hit .282/~.406/.318.

Fitzgerlad managed in the minors from 1951 to 1970. He then scouted for the Pittsburgh Pirates (1976), Atlanta Braves (1981-199?) and Florida Marlins.

Sources: 1947, 1951, 1953, 1954 and 1958 Baseball Guides, Pat Doyle's Professional Baseball Player Database

Year-by-Year Managerial Record[edit]

Year Team League Record Finish Organization Playoffs Notes
1951 Shawnee Hawks Sooner State League 96-44 2nd none Lost in 1st round
1952 Shawnee Hawks Sooner State League 29-25 -- none replaced by James Jolly (34-42) June 14
Longview Cherokees Big State League 42-47 7th none replaced Clemens Hausmann (29-29) on June 15
1953 Augusta Rams South Atlantic League 30-35 -- Shreveport Sports replaced by Robert Wilkins (35-39) June 20
1954 Port Arthur Sea Hawks Evangeline League 83-57 2nd Tyler Tigers Lost in 1st round
1955 Port Arthur Sea Hawks Big State League 26-22 -- none -- replaced by Earl Perry (14-18) on May 31
1956 Victoria Eagles Big State League 30-39 -- Dallas Eagles -- replaced James Basso (3-8) on April 23/
replaced by Hayden Greer (33-47) on July 1
1957 Pensacola Dons Alabama-Florida League 5th none replaced by Rex Ford June 10-19
1958 Pensacola Dons Alabama-Florida League 67-55 3rd Baltimore Orioles Lost in 1st round
1959 Pensacola Dons Alabama-Florida League 51-66 4th Baltimore Orioles Lost in 1st round
1960 Aberdeen Pheasants Northern League 63-61 3rd Baltimore Orioles Lost in 1st round
1961 Aberdeen Pheasants Northern League 74-54 2nd Baltimore Orioles League Champs
1962 Durham Bulls Carolina League 89-51 1st Houston Astros Lost League Finals
1963 San Antonio Bullets Texas League 79-61 1st Houston Astros Lost League Finals
1964 San Antonio Bullets Texas League 85-55 1st Houston Astros League Champs
1965 Amarillo Sonics Texas League 60-80 5th Houston Astros
1966 Tampa Tarpons Florida State League 47-94 10th Cincinnati Reds
1967 Buffalo Bisons International League 31-39 -- Cincinnati Reds replaced by Don Zimmer (32-37) July 5
Knoxville Smokies Southern League 24-40 6th Cincinnati Reds none replaced Don Zimmer (23-51) July 5
1968 Greenwood Braves Western Carolinas League 73-51 1st Atlanta Braves League Champs
1969 Shreveport Braves Texas League 61-75 7th Atlanta Braves
1970 Shreveport Braves Texas League 3-9 -- Atlanta Braves -- replaced by Clint Courtney (55-67) on May 3

Also Manager: 1962 Arizona Inst'l (Houston); 1963 Florida Inst'l (Houston); 1968-69 Arizona Inst'l (Atlanta).