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Harry Byrd

Harry Byrd

Position(s):
P
Born:
February 3, 1925
Bats:
Right
Throws:
Right
Height:
6' 1"
Weight:
188 lbs
Major League Debut:
4-21-1950 with PHA
Allstar Selections:
1952 ROOK

Harry Gladwin Byrd (February 3, 1925 — May 14, 1985) was an American Major League Baseball right-handed starting pitcher who played for the Philadelphia Athletics (1950, 1952–53), New York Yankees (1954), Baltimore Orioles (1955), Chicago White Sox (1955–56) and Detroit Tigers (1957). He was born in Darlington, South Carolina.

Byrd was a fire-ball throwing pitcher who had a career characterized by uncertainty, constant change, and transition from one team to the next.

Byrd pitched in six games with the Athletics in 1950, spent a season back in the minors, and was called back up to the big club in 1952. That year he enjoyed his best season, going 15-15 with a 3.31 ERA, earned an All-Star berth, and was selected Rookie of the Year.

In 1953 Byrd went 11-20, but he worked 237 innings. At the start of the 1954 season, he was part of a ten-player trade between the Athletics and Yankees. In New York he finished 9-7 with a 2.99 ERA. At the end of the season, he was sent to the Orioles as part of a 17-player mega-deal.

Byrd went 3-2 with Baltimore in 1955, before being shipped off again to the White Sox. He finished with a combined 7-8 record with a 4.61 ERA. After pitching briefly with the Sox in 1956, he ended his career in 1957 with the Tigers.

In a seven-year career, Byrd compiled a 46-54 record with 381 strikeouts and a 4.35 ERA in 827.2 innings.

Byrd lived in the small logging community of Mont Clare, just outside of his birthplace of Darlington, South Carolina. He was a true "blue collar" country boy brought up hunting and fishing. He died in Darlington at age of 60 after a bout with lung cancer. Darlington named a road after him (Harry Byrd Highway), which eventually becomes Bobo Newsom Highway, another major-league pitcher from the area (Hartsville).

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