Brooks Lawrence

Brooks Lawrence

Virtual Cards

1960 Leaf Card

Brooks Ulysses Lawrence (Bull)

    * Bats Right, Throws Right
    * Height 6' 0", Weight 205 lb.
    * School Miami University
    * Debut June 24, 1954
    * Final Game May 1, 1960
    * Born January 30, 1925 in Springfield, OH USA
    * Died April 27, 2000 in Springfield, OH USA

Brooks Lawrence pitched 14 seasons from 1948 to 1960, one in college (1948), two in the Negro National League (1948-1949), seven in the Major Leagues (1954-1960), and eight in the minors (1949-1960). He graduated from High School in Springfield, OH in 1942, where he was an All-State halfback in football, a high-scoring guard in basketball and a broad jumper in track. He did not play baseball in High School. He married Larcenia Winston 16 October 1942. He served in the United States Army for five years during World War II (1943-1947)(TSN). He pitched one year for Miami University of Ohio(1948), two in the Negro National League (1948-1949) and was signed by the Cleveland Indians as an amateur free agent in 1949. During this time, he also worked as a sand-blaster in construction projects. He pitched two years for the St. Louis Cardinals (1954-1955), five years for the Cincinnati Redlegs (1956-1960) and eleven different minor league teams (1949-1960). He also played winter ball in the Caribbean.

His best year in the minors was in 1953 when he was 18-13 with an ERA of 2.37 with Portsmouth in the Piedmont League in 1953. and was 76-72 lifetime in the minors. After retiring as a player, Lawrence worked ten years at International Harvester in Springfield and then spent ten years handling scouting, minor league player development, radio and television work and season-ticket sales for the Reds. Hobbies: reading & billiards. He died of cancer at age 75 at Mercy Hospital in Springfield and is buried in Ferncliff Cemetery in Springfield.

As a 29-year-old rookie seasoned in the Negro National League, Lawrence, nicknamed Bull for his willingness for hard work, went 15-6, with a 3.74 ERA in 159 innings, starting and relieving for the 1954 Cardinals. Hit hard in 1955, he was demoted to Oakland (Pacific Coast League), where he earned a second chance by going 5-1 down the stretch. Acquired by the Redlegs, he opened 1956 with 13 straight victories, among them two two-hitters. He finished 19-10 with a 3.99 ERA and was named for the All-Star Game. He then went 16-13 in 1957. He won only eight games in 1958 and seven in 1959, when he threw a third two-hitter. (MC) He finished his career with a 69-62 record with a 4.25 ERA.
[edit] Highlights

    * Before 1949 Season: Signed by the Cleveland Indians as an amateur free agent.

    * Before 1953 Season: Sent from the Cleveland Indians to the Cincinnati Reds in an unknown transaction.

    * 1953: Drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals 1 December from the Cincinnati Reds in the 1953 minor league draft.

    * 1955: Chicago Cubs rookie slugger Bob Speake homers in both games of a doubleheader 30 May against the Cards to finish the month with 10 homers. His slugging contributes to the sweep of the Cardinals in the double header with Paul Minner and ex-Cardinal Howie Pollet the winners for Chicago, while Lawrence and Bobby Tiefenauer take the losses.

    * 1956: Traded by the Cardinals with Sonny Senerchia to the Redlegs 31 January for Jackie Collum. Lawrence, who finished the year at 5–1 after spending time in the minors, will open the 1956 season with 13 straight victories. On 29 May, Gus Bell repeats his performance of the year before with three consecutive homeruns, ending up at 5-for-5, to lead the Redlegs to victory over the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field, 10-4. With more than enough run support, Lawrence gets his sixth straight win.

    * 1960: Released by the Cincinnati Reds 19 July.

Notable Achievements

    * NL All-Star (1956)
    * 15 Wins Seasons: 3 (1954, 1956 & 1957)
    * 200 Innings Pitched Seasons: 2 (1956 & 1957)

By BR Bullpen

Baseball Executive, Bull, Cincinnati Redlegs, Cincinnati Reds, Cleveland Indians, Director of player development, Negro National League, Piedmont League, Scout, St. Louis Cardinals


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