Friday, January 7, 2011
Vintage Fridays: Don Lenhardt, 1954 Bowman #53
-He is still alive! As of this writing, Don is 88 years old.
-He had narrow feet, making it hard to find shoes that fit well. Accordingly, he was nicknamed "Footsie".
-Lenhardt served in the Navy for four years during World War II.
-Due partly to his military service, Don was 27 by the time he reached the majors with the 1950 Browns. As the starting first baseman, he led the sad-sack team (58-96 record) with 22 home runs, 81 RBI, 90 walks, and a .481 slugging percentage.
-He spent the next four years as a part-time player, until a broken leg ended his short career in 1954.
-Don played only 13 games for the Orioles at the onset of their inaugural 1954 season before he was dealt to the Red Sox. In those 13 games he managed just 5 hits (.152 AVG) and a single RBI.
-He scouted for the BoSox for several years and also coached and broadcast games for the club. He was responsible for the signing of major leaguers such as Dick Mills, Al Nipper, Scott Cooper, and Cory Bailey.