Pat Patterson (pattepa02)

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Andrew Lawrence Patterson

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Biographical Information[edit]

Pat Patterson was a 4-time All-Star infielder in the Negro Leagues. He played every position except pitcher and catcher but was known primarily as a third baseman with a well-rounded skill set.

College career and rookie year[edit]

Patterson played on integrated teams in high school. He had a chance to go to New York University for football and basketball but opted instead for Wiley College, where he starred in football and baseball. He then joined the Cleveland Red Sox and Homestead Grays in 1934. He hit .281 for Cleveland and was their lone All-Star. While he did not finish among the leading vote-getters, he was selected as the backup second baseman for the West and went 0 for 1 after replacing Sammy T. Hughes in the 1934 East-West Game.

1935: The Crawfords powerhouse[edit]

Pat played a fine supporting role on the great 1935 Pittsburgh Crawfords, arguably the greatest Negro League team ever. Patterson played second and hit .376, better than their four Hall-of-Famers, Josh Gibson (.355), Cool Papa Bell (.320), Oscar Charleston (.294) and Judy Johnson (.263). He went 7 for 27 in the Negro National League championship series against the New York Cubans. In game six, with Pittsburgh down 3 games to 2 and the score tied 6-6 in the bottom of the 9th, Patterson doubled against Martin Dihigo and scored on a hit by Johnson to win it; the Steel City team won again the next day to pick up the title.

1936: Starring for Kansas City[edit]

Patterson jumped to the Kansas City Monarchs in 1936 but there was no organized Negro League in the West. Patterson led all midwest/western players in average in games against other top teams with a .694 mark (20 for 37), over 200 points ahead of the next player. He was selected to the East-West Game again and was 2 for 2 with a double and RBI as the West was crushed 10-2; only Alex Radcliffe competed with him as the West's top hitter in the game. Patterson replaced Willard Brown during that game.

1937: Pittsburgh, the Dominican and exhibitions[edit]

Returning to Pittsburgh in 1937, Patterson hit third in the order but did not remain long as he moved to the Dominican League. There, he hit .349 for the Águilas Cibaeñas, fourth in the circuit behind Gibson, Clyde Spearman and Dihigo and ahead of Bell and many other stars. That fall, he joined the Monarchs for an exhibition series against Bob Feller, Lon Warneke, Lou Fette, Mike Ryba, Jim Weaver, Mace Brown and a fair group of major league hitters, led by Johnny Mize. Pat went 3 for 10 as Kansas City lost 3 of 4 games.

1938-39: Philadelphia[edit]

Switching teams once more, Patterson moved to the Philadelphia Stars. There, he hit .275 as the second baseman in 1938. He improved to .331 the next year, leading the club. He made his third All-Star team despite again drawing few votes (195,419, 9th among third basemen). In the first 1939 East-West Game, he hit 6th for the East and started at third. He went 1 for 4 with a steal and a run in a 4-2 defeat. Andy moved up to fifth in the second 1939 East-West Game, sandwiched between Gibson and Buck Leonard but went 0 for 5 with an RBI in a 10-2 win.

1940-41: Mexico[edit]

Having spent two years in the same place, it was time to be on the move again. The 28-year-old signed with the Mexico City Red Devils and produced at a .341/~.397/.554 rate with 55 runs scored in 60 games. He batted .362/~.397/.486 for Mexico City the next year for a .348/~.397/.530 line overall. In 92 games there, he had scored 78, rapped 138 hits, 33 doubles, 12 triples, stolen 20 and driven in 81.

While in Mexico, Pat got married; his wife's name was Gladys. Mexican Hall-of-Fame manager Ernesto Carmona threw him a party and declared a team holiday.

1941-42: Back in Philly[edit]

Patterson continued his trend of returning to his old teams when he rejoined Philadelphia during the 1941 season. He manned third again and hit .338, second on the team. In 1942, Pat returned to second and batted .272. While he again got few votes for the East-West Game, he was the starting third baseman for the East. In the first 1942 East-West Game, he went 0 for 3 with a walk and a steal and made two errors while batting 7th and playing the full game. The East won 5-2 and one of the West's runs was scored unearned thanks to his fielding gaffe. In the second 1942 East-West Game, Patterson hit 7th and played the whole game at third again for the East in a contest that raised funds for the Army and Navy Emergency Relief Fund. He was 1 for 4 with a walk, two steals, a run and an RBI in the East's 9-2 rout.

Overall, Pat had hit .211/~.286/.253 in his six East-West Games, with two runs, three RBI, four steals and two errors. He tied Henry Kimbro for the most career steals in East-West competition, though he took four fewer games than Kimbro to reach the level.

1942-45: Military service[edit]

The same year he had helped raise money for the military, Andy served his country. He joined late in 1942 and remained for three years during World War II.

1946-49: The Eagles[edit]

After his discharge, the 34-year-old infielder returned to baseball. He joined the Newark Eagles and hit .288 while playing third; Larry Doby and Monte Irvin manned the middle infield. In the 1946 Negro World Series, Patterson went 6 for 23 to help Newark to their only title. The veteran saw reduced time in 1947, though he still batted .320.

Pat batted .217 with the 1949 Newark Eagles to close out his career.

Post-baseball career[edit]

Patterson became a teacher and high school coach after his playing career ended. Working his way up the academic chain, he became an athletic director (for a segregated school system, decades after he had played in an integrated high school) and then later the superintendent of schools in Houston, TX. He became the first black coach picked for the Texas Coaches Hall of Fame.

Notable Achievements[edit]

  • 3-time NNL All-Star (1934, 1939 & 1942)
  • NNL Runs Scored Leader (1939)
  • NNL Total Bases Leader (1939)
  • NNL Doubles Leader (1938)
  • NNL Triples Leader (1939)
  • Won one Negro World Series with the Newark Eagles in 1946


Related Sites[edit]