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This Day in Washington Baseball History...

(The Continuing Attempt To Educate A Montreal Fan About DC Baseball History...)

James Barton "Mickey" Vernon died today, the 24th of September 2008, at 90 years of age, three days short of the 48th anniversary of his last Major League game, which took place on September 27th, 1960, bringing an end to a 20-year career with the Washington Senators (1939-'48, '50-'55), Cleveland Indians ('49-'50, '58), Boston Red Sox (1956-'57), Milwaukee Braves ('59) and finally in Pittsburgh, PA (1960), where according to Harry Chaykun's Delco Times (PA) article entitled, "Delco legend Mickey Vernon dies", "He ended his playing career in 1960 as a player/coach for the Pittsburgh Pirates." 

Mickey Vernon was the AL Batting Champion twice, both times with the Washington Senators, when he hit for a .353 AVG in 1946, beating out the Red Sox' Ted Williams (.342 AVG) and Johnny Pesky (.335 AVG). Seven years later, Vernon went on to win his second batting title when he was back in DC claiming the 1953 crown by one-thousandth of a point at .337 over Cleveland's Al Rosen's .336...

Originally signed as a 19-year-old amateur free agent in 1937 by the Senators, Mickey Vernon debuted with Washington on July 8, 1939, and over the next twenty years he collected 2,495 hits, 490 doubles, 120 triples, 172 HR's, 1,311 RBI's, 137 steals and a .286 career AVG. 

"Earlier this year...," Mr. Chaykun writes in his article:

"...Vernon was one of 10 players named by the Baseball Veterans Committee for consideration for induction into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. A 12-member panel selected by the Veterans Committee will meet in December. If nine of the 12 members of the committee include Vernon's name on their ballot, he will be inducted into the Hall of Fame posthumously in July 2009."

After retiring from play, Vernon returned to Washington where he managed the Senators to a 135-267 record over two-plus seasons, losing more than 100 games in each of the first two years, and leaving just 40 games into his third time around as the Senators' manager...Never managing in the Majors again...