Wednesday, March 11, 2009

#584 Harry Bright

#584 Harry Bright
Harry Bright is listed as an infielder-outfielder-catcher on this card. What, didn't he ever chip in as a pitcher? The answer is sadly no. He never played shortstop or center field either, that selfish so-and-so.

Fun facts about Harry Bright:

-Incredibly, the Yankees signed this Kansas City kid in 1946, when he was only sixteen!

-Hit .301 in 1,650 career minor league games, including a whopping .413 (with a .704 slugging percentage) in 95 games with the Class C Clovis Pioneers in 1950!

-In an early indicator of his skills for teaching baseball, Harry spent 1952 as player-manager of the Class D Janesville Cubs. Though the team had a seventh-place finish (54-66), he led the league with 101 RBI.

-Spent a dozen years in the minors with five organizations (Yankees, Cubs, White Sox, Tigers, Pirates), as well as a few stops with unaffiliated teams, before Pittsburgh called him in August 1958.

-Hit four home runs in 59 games with the Pirates (1958-1960), including a game-winning three-run shot with two outs in the eleventh on June 8, 1959. That pinch-hit clout against the Giants made a winner of Roy Face, who ran his record to 8-0.

-Was traded to the Senators and spent two years there (1961-1962), getting the bulk of his major-league exposure in D.C. In 113 games in 1962, Bright hit .273, drove in 67 runs, and hit a team-high 17 home runs.

-Back with the Yankees in 1963, Harry hit seven home runs as a reserve and saw action in the World Series. It was a bittersweet moment, as he pinch-hit for Steve Hamilton in the bottom of the ninth and ended the game as the 15th strikeout victim of Sandy Koufax, setting a Series record later broken by Bob Gibson. Bright later mused, "After all those years in baseball I make it into a World Series game and the whole country was pulling for me to strike out." He was also whiffed by Johnny Podres in his only other at-bat that Fall, pinch hitting for Al Downing in Game Two.

-Finished his career in 1965 with the Cubs, having hit .255 with 32 home runs in parts of eight major league seasons.

-Managed in the minors from 1967 through 1976, and again in 1985. Won a Northwest League championship with the North Coos-Bay Athletics in 1970.

-Spent several years as a West Coast scout for the Montreal Expos prior to his death at age 70 in 2000.
#584 Harry Bright (back)


  1. the position list on this card is one of the best ever. I have seen a few IF-OF - but never IF-OF-C.

  2. I believe his 1960 cards has him listed as a Cub too, but he didn't actually play for them until 65.