Lou Possehl

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Louis Thomas Possehl

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Biographical Information[edit]

Lou Possehl was a pitcher for eleven years (1944-1954), one in college (1944), two in semipro/independent ball (1945-1946), eight in the minors (1947-1954) and five cups of coffee in the majors (1946-1948, 1951-1952), losing parts of two years to the military (1944-1945). He graduated from Steinmetz High School in Chicago, IL in 1944 at age 18. He then attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (1944 and 1945-1946). His grandfather, George Rooks, played in the majors, making Lou the first grandson of a major leaguer to appear in a game.

He was in the U. S. Navy from August 1944 to July 1945 as an athletics service officer at the Great Lakes Naval Station. He was attending college and playing semi-pro ball in Chicago when he was signed by scout Eddie Krajnik of the Philadelphia Phillies and went directly to Philadelphia and pitched his first professional game on August 25, 1946 at age 20, beating the Cincinnati Reds (TSN 9/4/46 & 3/10/48).

From then on, his minor league career was interrupted only by four more cups of coffee with the Phils, in 1947, 1948, 1951 and 1952. He played with the Utica Blue Sox in 1947, going 15-8 with a 3.23 ERA, tying for third in the Eastern League in wins. From 1948 to 1950, he was with the Toronto Maple Leafs of the International League. He was 11-11, 4.50 in 1948; 4-10, 5.77 in 1949; and 6-9, 4.83 in 1950. He then spent the next three years with the Baltimore Orioles, also in the IL, posting marks in order of 10-8, 3.38; 0-3, 6.26; and 0-1, 18.00. He spent most of 1953 with the Terre Haute Phillies of the Three-I League and had a 1-1 record. He ended his baseball career at age 28 with the Kansas City Blues of the American Association in 1954, getting no decisions.

Overall in the majors, he was 2-5 with 1 complete game in 8 games started, 2 games finished, 21 strikeouts, 24 walks and 0 shutouts in 51 2/3 innings pitched with an ERA of 5.26 and a WHIP of 1.675 in 15 games. Overall in the minors, he was 47-59.

He married Dorothy Vik on May 26, 1951. He had blond hair and blue eyes, his ancestry was German and his principal hobbies were golf and billiards. He died at age 71 in Sarasota, FL on October 7, 1997 and is buried at an unkonwn location..

"He is a magnificently built youngster, with a three-quarter motion that is much like that of George Earnshaw." Source: The Sporting News (3/10/1948, Stan Baumgartner)


Principal sources for Lou Possehl 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 (none) (WW), old Baseball Registers (1952) (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) ; The International League: Year-by-year Statistics, 1884-1953 by Marshall D. Wright; The American Association: Year-By-Year Statistics for the Baseball Minor League, 1902-1952 by Marshall D. Wright; and independent research by Walter Kephart (WK) and Frank Russo (FR) and others.

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