Ray Lamanno

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Raymond Simond Lamanno

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Biographical Information[edit]

Ray Lamanno was a catcher for 12 seasons, 1938 to 1952, five in the Major Leagues and 12 in the minors, losing three years to the Military. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II (1943-1945) (GB).

Signed by scout Lester Patterson (Pat), he caught five years with the Cincinnati Reds from 1941 to 1948. In 1942, Lamanno replaced his boyhood idol and fellow native Oaklander Ernie Lombardi as the Reds' starting catcher and hit .264 with 12 home runs. (JK)

On May 5, 1946, as the New York Giants and Reds split a doubleheader with New York taking the opener, 3–2, Cincinnati fans booed the substitution of Ray Mueller for Ray Lamanno, in the Reds' 7-4 win in the nightcap. Lamanno had three hits in four trips to the plate but had to give way to Mueller for the final inning to preserve a National League record consecutive-game catching streak of 233 contests. Mueller sat out the next day, ending the streak for good. He had missed only 81 innings during the streak, which began July 31, 1943, and included Army service through 1945.

On July 17, 1948, the Brooklyn Dodgers downed the Reds, 8–4 and 10–4 for their 12th win in 14 games. Paul Minner won his first ML game in the nightcap with six innings of relief. During an argument with umpire Frank Dascoli, Reds catcher Dewey Williams grabbed the ump. Willliams was fined $100 and suspended for five games. However, with Mueller on the disabled list with a broken ankle, the Reds appealed the suspension, stating they had only one catcher, Lamanno. National League President Ford Frick ruled that Williams would serve the suspension in the Reds clubhouse, while dressed in full uniform. If anything happened to Lamanno, Williams could substitute, and a game would be added to his suspension.

He died at age 74 from bladder cancer at Alta Bates Hospital in Berkeley, CA and was cremated.


Principal sources for Ray Lamanno include newspaper obituaries (OB), government Veteran records (VA,CM,CW), Stars & Stripes (S&S), Sporting Life (SL), The Sporting News (TSN), The Sports Encyclopedia:Baseball 2006 by David Neft & Richard Cohen (N&C), old Who's Who in Baseballs {{{WW}}} (WW), old Baseball Registers {{{BR}}} (BR) , old Daguerreotypes by TSN {{{DAG}}} (DAG), Stars&Stripes (S&S), The Baseball Necrology by Bill Lee (BN), Pat Doyle's Professional Ballplayer DataBase (PD), The Baseball Library (BL), Baseball in World War II Europe by Gary Bedingfield (GB) {{{MORE}}} and independent research by Walter Kephart (WK) and Frank Russo (FR) and others.

Notable Achievements[edit]

  • NL All-Star (1946)

Related Sites[edit]