Gil Hodges

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File:Gil Hodges 54 Topps-102.jpg
Gil Hodges - Topps baseball card - 1954 Series, #102


Gilbert Raymond Hodges, born Gilbert Ray Hodge (April 4 1924 - April 2 1972), was an American first baseman and manager in Major League Baseball.

Career

From 1943 through 1963, Hodges played for the Brooklyn & Los Angeles Dodgers (1943, 1947-61) and New York Mets (1962-63). He batted and threw right handed. Following his playing career, Hodges managed the Washington Senators (1963-67) and New York Mets (1968-71).

A native of Princeton, Indiana, Hodges was originally signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers as a third baseman. After serving in the US Marine Corps during World War II, he returned to Brooklyn and was made the backup catcher. Shortly thereafter he was moved to first and eventually became one of the best defensive first basemen in baseball history. He received three Gold Glove Awards between 1957 and 1959.

A member of the 1955 World Series champion World Champion 1955 Dodgers, Hodges held the National League record for grand slams (14) for several years, and he is a member of the exclusive club of players that have hit four home runs in a single game. Also, he had more RBI during the 1950's than any other player (1001), and was an eight-time All-Star, from 1949-55, and in 1957.

Hodges was one of the original 1962 Mets. A year later, he retired from playing and went on to manage the Washington Senators in the midseason. In 1968 he was brought back to manage the Mets and led them to the 1969 World Series championship.

Hodges died suddently of a heart attack in West Palm Beach, Florida while managing the Mets during spring training in 1972, just two days short of his 48th birthday.

Batting and fielding statistics (1943-1963)

 G    AB   R    H    2B 3B HR   RBI SB  BB   SO  BA   
2071 7030 1105 1921 295 48 370 1274 63 943 1137.273 
 G    PO    A    E   DP   TC     FP
2084 15722 1365 145 1614 17232 .992

Managerial career (1963-1971)

Years   Team         G   W   L   WPCT 
1963-67 Washington  765 321 444  .420
1968-71 NY Mets     649 339 309  .523
TOTAL              1414 660 753  .467 

Facts

  • Hodges was inducted into the New York Mets Hall of Fame in 1982.
  • Milton J. Shapiro published a biography of Hodges, The Gil Hodges Story (1960)
  • Hodges and Frank Slocum published a book called The Game Of Baseball (1969)
  • A bridge between Brooklyn and Rockaway, a park on Carroll St. and a Little League field on MacDonald Ave. in Brooklyn, were named after Hodges, as was the high school baseball stadium in his birthplace of Princeton, Indiana

Related links

Sources