- 1B, OF
- November 2, 1920
- 6' 2"
- 205 lbs
- Major League Debut:
- 4-16-1946 with SLN
Richard Alan Sisler (November 2, 1920 — November 20, 1998) was an American player, coach and manager in Major League Baseball. A native of St. Louis, Missouri, Sisler was the son of Hall of Fame first baseman and two-time .400 hitter George Sisler. Younger brother Dave Sisler was a relief pitcher in the 1950s and 1960s with four MLB teams, and older brother George Jr. was a longtime executive in minor league baseball.
Dick Sisler attended Colgate University. He batted left-handed and threw right-handed, stood 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) tall and weighed 205 lb (93 kg). He was a journeyman left fielder and first baseman for the St. Louis Cardinals (1946–47, 1952–53), Philadelphia Phillies (1948–51) and Cincinnati Reds (1952). In an eight-season career, Sisler was a .276 hitter with 55 home runs and 360 RBI in 799 games. He made the National League All-Star team in 1950.
1950 pennant-winning home run
His MLB career was distinguished by one shining moment. On the closing day of the 1950 season, at Ebbets Field, he hit a tenth-inning, opposite-field, three-run home run against the Brooklyn Dodgers that would give the "Whiz Kids" Phillies their first National League pennant in 35 years. Had Philadelphia lost, the Phillies and Dodgers would have finished in a flat-footed tie for the championship and a best-of-three playoff would have resulted. The home run made Sisler world-famous; Ernest Hemingway feted him in his novel The Old Man and the Sea.
Dick's father, George Sr., was a Brooklyn scout in 1950. When asked after the pennant winning game how he felt when his son beat his current team, the Dodgers, George replied, "I felt awful and terrific at the same time."
Coaching and managerial career
After managing in the minor leagues with the AA Nashville Vols and AAA Seattle Rainiers, Sisler became a coach for Cincinnati in 1961, serving under manager Fred Hutchinson. In August 1964, Sisler was promoted to acting manager under tragic circumstances when Hutchinson, suffering from cancer, had to give up the reins. Sisler led the Reds to a 32-21 record, and the team finished in a second-place tie (with the Phillies), one game behind the Cardinals. After his formal appointment as manager in October 1964, Sisler brought the Reds home fourth in 1965 with an 89-73 mark before his dismissal at season's end. He then returned to the major league coaching ranks with the Cardinals, San Diego Padres and New York Mets. In his late 60s he was still working with young players as an instructor in the Cardinals' farm system.
Dick Sisler died in Nashville, Tennessee at age 78.
1. ^ "Sisler vs. Sisler". Toledo Blade: p. 24. 1950-10-02. http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=7P8ZAAAAIBAJ&sjid=Bg4EAAAAIBAJ&pg=3278,1188745&dq=dick+george+sisler&hl=en.
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