Nolan Campbell

From BR Bullpen

Nolan Reuben Campbell (Nolie)

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5'6"-5'7", Weight 160-180 lbs.

BR minors page

Biographical Information[edit]

Nolan Campbell played 12 years in the minors, never as a huge star, and was a minor league manager for eight seasons. He was the first manager to be ejected from a game by a woman.

He debuted in 1958 and played for three teams that year - the Johnson City Phillies (hitting .250 with 16 RBI), the Brunswick Phillies (.246, 2 HR, 20 RBI) and the Bakersfield Bears (1.000). In 1959, he spent all year with Bakersfield, batting .266 with 3 HR and 50 RBI. The next season, Campbell hit .268 with 4 HR and 39 RBI for the Des Moines Demons.

He split 1961 between the Dothan Phillies (.265, 6 HR, 28 RBI), Williamsport Grays (.241, 7 RBI) and Chattanooga Lookouts (.000), making his only AA appearance as a player. In 1962, Nolan returned to Bakersfield to bat .254 with six homers and 54 RBI.

In 1963, Campbell was on the Magic Valley Cowboys and batted .284 with one HR and 40 RBI. It was here that he pinch hit for future batting champ Alex Johnson in a no-hitter being thrown by Twin Falls right-handed pitcher Phil Landes. Nolan doubled up the middle for Magic Valley's only hit of the game. He considers this the highlight of his playing career.

In 1964, Campbell played with the Bears in his fourth season with Bakersfield, hitting .251 with 2 HR and 34 RBI.

Campbell moved to the Eugene Emeralds in 1965 at the bottom of the Phillies chain and hit .260 with 2 HR and 42 RBI. In his last year solely as a player, he was back in Bakersfield, batting .286/~.438/.382. He scored 102 runs (fifth in the California League, drew 125 walks (leading the league) and stole 33 bases in 43 tries; he was third in the loop in steals. He also provided solid outfield defense, among the leaders in fielding percentage and assists.

Campbell became a player-manager for Bakersfield in 1967. He was 1 for 2 with two walks and a double in the only game he played while his team finished fourth in both halves. He pitched briefly in 1968 and 1970, but spent the rest of his remaining career as a manager.

While managing Auburn in 1972, Campbell was involved in the first game managed by a female umpire, Bernice Gera. When Gera reversed an incorrect "safe" call against his baserunner Terry Ford, Campbell came out to argue. Campbell shouted at her and cussed at her, telling her she should never have become an umpire in the first place. Gera threw him out of the game, then resigned later in the day.

Nolan Campbell ended his career managing in the New York Mets farm system with Visalia, ironically overlapping one year where Bernice Gera worked for the Mets PR Department. Over his professional career, he played all nine positions, including all nine positions in a single game twice: in 1959 with Bakersfield and in 1970 with Peninsula.

Year-by-Year Managerial Record[edit]

Year Team League Record Finish Organization Playoffs
1967 Bakersfield Bears California League 70-68 4th Philadelphia Phillies
1968 Eugene Emeralds Northwest League 41-32 2nd Philadelphia Phillies none
1969 Raleigh-Durham Phillies Carolina League 79-62 2nd Philadelphia Phillies League Champs
1970 Peninsula Phillies Carolina League 67-72 6th Philadelphia Phillies
1971 Reading Phillies Eastern League 72-67 3rd Philadelphia Phillies
1972 Auburn Phillies New York-Penn League 39-30 4th Philadelphia Phillies none
1973 Visalia Mets California League 62-78 7th New York Mets
1974 Visalia Mets California League 61-79 7th (t) New York Mets

Sources include 1967-1968 Baseball Guides, Mendoza's Heroes by Al Pepper, Pat Doyle's Professional Baseball Player Database