Dino Chiozza

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Dino Joseph Chiozza

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Biographical Information[edit]

Dino Chiozza's big career spanned two exciting days in July 1935.

His first appearance came on July 14, the second game of a Philadelphia Phillies-St. Louis Cardinals doubleheader. Before the first game, Commissioner Landis awarded the Cardinals their World Series rings, then watched the Gashouse Gang sweep the set. After watching from the Phillies' bench as Paul Dean made light work of the Phils in the first game, Dino entered the second game as a defensive replacement for shortstop Mickey Haslin. He formed a double play combo with his brother, Lou, and made one putout in his only fielding chance.

The next day, in Chicago, he was tabbed to pinch-run for Johnny Moore with 2 out in the top of the 9th inning against the Cubs. Manager Charlie Grimm respected his speed enough to pull Gabby Hartnett off the bench to catch, hoping to keep Chiozza from stealing. Dino advanced on Johnny Vergez walk, then scored the game-tying run from second on Joe Bowman's pinch-hit single to left. He played the 9th and 10th innings at shortstop without a fielding chance. Like the fabled Moonlight Graham, Dino never appeared at bat, coming the closest in the top of the 10th inning. He was on deck when George Watkins flied out to end the Phillies' half of the inning. He played the bottom of the 10th in the field, after which he never returned.

Interesting side note: in the 9th inning of Dino's final game (July 15, 1935), with Dino at shortstop, his brother at second base and relief pitcher Pretzel Pezzullo on the mound, it marked the only time that three "ZZ" players appeared in the field for one big league team at the same time.

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