- 1B, OF, LF, RF
- July 19, 1916
- 5' 11"
- 175 lbs
- Major League Debut:
- 9-16-1934 with CHN
- Allstar Selections:
- 1945 MVP
Phil Cavarretta was synonymous with Chicago baseball for more than two decades. In 1935 at the age of 18 he was the strarting first baseman on the NL champion Cubs. In 1945 he won the NL Most Valuable Player award, leading the Cubs to their last World Series as he won the batting title. He was player/manager of the Cubs for three seasons before he was fired in spring training prior to the 1954 season after being too blunt about his team's bleak chances in the pennant race.
"I'm a Cub forever, and I want them to win….the fans are the best in the game."
Cavarretta had been in the league for more than a decade but started the year just 28 years of age. He had a deferment from military service due to bad hearing. In '45 he led the NL in batting (.355) and OBP (.449). He was in the top ten in almost every other offensive category, as he had been in 1944. He was one of the three or four best players still playing at that point in the war.
Phil Cavarretta set an All-Star Game record by reaching base five times consecutively on a triple, single, and three walks, on July 11, 1944. The NL won the contest, 7-1.
After Ernie Banks was drilled by a pitch during a spring training game in 1954, Cavarretta ordered his team to wear batting helmets while at the plate. His edict pre-dated the mandatory batting helmet rule by several years.
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