Eric McNair

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Donald Eric McNair

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Biographical Information[edit]

Eric McNair, an infielder who played 14 seasons in the major leagues, led the American League in doubles in 1932.

McNair came up at an auspicious time when the Philadelphia Athletics were at their best. He was a 20-year-old rookie going 4-for-8 in 1929, when the A's won the 1929 World Series. Playing part-time in 1930 and 1931 and appearing at various infield positions, he was briefly in both the 1930 World Series and in the 1931 World Series.

McNair finally played every day in 1932, settling in at shortstop and getting over 550 at-bats. He led the league with 47 doubles in spite of having hit only 10 the previous year in 280 at-bats. He also had 18 home runs, good for eighth in the league.

In future years, McNair would only one more time get over 22 doubles in a season. He would also continue to shift around the infield. While he was primarily a shortstop some seasons, he was mainly a second baseman or third baseman in other years. His highest batting average came in 1939 when he hit .324 as a third baseman for the Chicago White Sox, for whom he batted in the seventh slot on Opening Day.

His whole career was in the American League, and after being traded away from the A's before the 1936 season, he came back to them in mid-1942 to end his career.

McNair's obituary indicates that he played in the minors at Meridian, Memphis and Knoxville in 1928 and 1929 before coming to the majors. He ended his major league career with the A's after refusing to go to the Washington Senators in "an attempted deal". He managed at Savannah in 1948 until a heart attack on July 14. For 1949 he had signed as a scout with the A's. He died of a heart attack at age 39.

He was nicknamed "Boob" after a cartoon character, but he was well-liked. He was also easy-going.

McNair's brother, Ralph McNair, was a minor league catcher.

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