Pat Crawford

From BR Bullpen

Pat Crawford.jpg

Clifford Rankin Crawford
(Captain Pat)

BR page

Biographical Information[edit]

Pat Crawford played baseball for several semipro and minor league teams throughout the 1920s, including a stint as the left fielder for the 1922 Kinston Highwaymen in the Eastern Carolina Baseball Association, an independent or "outlaw league" team not affiliated with the National Association. His first priority was his work as a schoolteacher, and he would only play for teams that accepted his belief. For example, he insisted on beginning the season late and wrapping up early in order not to interfere with his main source of income. A deeply religious man, he also refused to play on Sundays. He was a teacher at Gastonia High School from 1923 to 1927, also coaching the school's football and baseball teams. But he was such a good player that he eventually was lured to the high minors and then the big leagues. Crawford got his big break in 1929 when he made it to the majors with the New York Giants, which were still being managed by future Hall of Famer John McGraw.

On May 26, 1929, Crawford hit a pinch hit grand slam off Socks Seibold in the 6th inning. Les Bell, for the opposing Boston Braves, hit another pinch grand slam off Carl Hubbell in the 7th. This is the only time in major league history two pinch grand slams were hit in the same game. Both were needed, as the game was tied 2-2 before Crawford's blast, and ended 15-8.

Pat was in and out of the majors through the 1934 season. He was named league MVP of the American Association while playing for the Columbus Senators in 1932. In 1934, Crawford found himself playing on the world champion St Louis Cardinals. The last two games of his major league career were World Series games. All told, Pat hit .280 in 318 major league games. He developed a life-threatening infection in 1935 which ended his playing career and left him with a permanent limp. He soldiered on, living a long life, passing away just days shy of his 92nd birthday in 1994. He was one of the initial inductees in the Kinston Professional Baseball Hall of Fame on February 11, 1983.

Notable Achievements[edit]

Further Reading[edit]

  • Gregory H. Wolf: "Pat Crawford", in Charles F. Faber, ed.: The 1934 St. Louis Cardinals: The World Champion Gas House Gang, SABR, Phoenix, AZ, 2014, pp. 62-67. ISBN 978-1-933599-731

Related Sites[edit]