Gready McKinnis

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Gready McKinnis
(Lefty, Gread)
last name also listed as McInnis

  • Bats Right, Throws Left
  • Height 6' 2", Weight 168 lb.

Biographical Information[edit]

Gready McKinnis was a three-time All-Star pitcher in the Negro Leagues who pitched in the minors late in his career.

McKinnis first made it to the Negro Leagues' top tier at age 27 with the 1941 Birmingham Black Barons. He went 4-1 with a 1.67 RA. He was second in the Negro American League in RA behind Dan Bankhead and ranked ahead of Satchel Paige and Hilton Smith. In 1942, he had a sophomore slump, going 2-5. He also spent part of that season with the Ethiopian Clowns under the name of Selassie. Also, during the 1942 Colored World Series, he pitched an exhibition game with the Kansas City Monarchs, blanking the Homestead Grays with a 3-hit shutout. He rebounded to 6-4 with the Black Barons in 1943. In the 1943 East-West Game, he relieved Paige with a 1-0 lead in the 4th and a no-hitter in progress. He blanked the East for two more innings before Horacio Martinez singled in the 6th. He left with a one-hitter in progress and the West would win, 2-1. He was 0 for 1 at the plate.

Lefty moved to the Chicago American Giants in 1944 and went 6-6. In the 1944 East-West Game, he gave up two runs in 1 1/3 innings in a 7-4 West loss, replacing Gentry Jessup and being replaced by Chet Brewer. In 1945, the southpaw from Alabama was 6-5. His 91 strikeouts were second in the NAL behind Jessup.

McKinnis vanished from the top-flight Negro Leagues from 1946-1948. He resurfaced with Chicago in 1949. In the 1949 East-West Game, he relieved Bill Greason in the 7th but gave up four hits and two runs (one earned) in 1 2/3 innings before Willie Hutchinson took his place.

Gready was 11-6 for Brandon in the 1951 Manitoba-Dakota League. In '52, he made it to Organized Baseball at age 38. He went 3-5 with a 3.21 ERA for the Tampa Smokers. The next year, he was 1-4 for Tampa and 7-5 in the Manitoba-Dakota League. He wrapped up with the 1955 St. Petersburg Saints, going 5-8 with a 4.58 ERA.

Notable Achievements[edit]

  • 2-time NAL All-Star (1943 & 1944)
  • NAL Winning Percentage Leader (1941)
  • NAL Shutouts Leader (1945)


Related Sites[edit]