Vinnie Smith

From BR Bullpen

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Vincent Ambrose Smith

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 6' 1", Weight 176 lb.

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Biographical Information[edit]

Smith during WWII.

A budding star before World War II, Vinnie Smith played a lot of service ball during the war, at one time being Bob Feller's favorite catcher. After the war he was expected to be a star in the majors but injuries (and surgeries) limited his major league playing career. He played in the minors through 1953, managing the Richmond Colts in 1949 and 1950.

After his playing days, Smith became an umpire through unusual circumstances. While in his final playing season in the minors, the umpires failed to show up for a game due to transportation issues. Players were forced to fill in, and Smith was placed behind the plate. He enjoyed it and stuck with it, and he eventually returned to the majors as a National League umpire in 1957.

Smith was behind the plate in 1959 when Harvey Haddix threw twelve perfect innings, only to lose the game in the 13th. He was also a member of the crew when Stan Musial got his 3,000th hit the year prior. He worked until 1965. He worked in the 1964 World Series and both All-Star Games staged in 1960.

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