Short Among the Braves

 

Glancing Back, and Remembering Johnny Logan

For a decade, Johnny Logan provided All-Star caliber shortstop play for the Milwaukee Braves. He teamed with another infield All-Star, second baseman Red Schoendienst, at the end of the 1950s, when the Braves took back-to-back National League pennants.

Johnny Logan was the Braves’ shortstop for a decade starting in 1952. A three-time All-Star, Logan was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1961.

Logan was signed by the Boston Braves in 1947. He made his debut in Boston in 1951, batting .219 in 62 games.

By 1952, Logan was the Braves’ starting shortstop, batting .283. In 10 seasons with the Braves (both the Boston and Milwaukee versions), Logan hit a combined .270. His best season offensively came in 1955, when he batted .297 with 13 home runs and 83 RBIs. He also led the National League with 37 doubles in 1955.

Logan was chosen for the National League All-Star team in 1955. He made the NL All-Star team each season from 1957 through 1959.

After a decade-long tour with the Braves, Logan was traded in 1961 to the Pittsburgh Pirates for outfielder Gino Cimoli. In Pittsburgh, Logan was relegated to a backup role, first behind Dick Groat and then Dick Schofield. In three seasons with the Pirates, Logan batted a combined .249. He retired after the 1963 season.

Logan had a career batting average of .268 over 13 major league seasons.

 

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Talent in Reserve

 

Glancing Back, and Remembering Gino Cimoli

Gino Cimoli was a much-traveled and much-valued outfielder who played from the mid-1950s to the mid-1960s. He played for seven different major league clubs in a 10-year career, the valuable reserve who could play any of the outfield positions and cause problems for opposing pitchers when he came to bat.

As a rookie with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1957, Gino Cimoli batted .293 and was a member of the National League All-Star team.

Cimoli was signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1949 and made his major league debut in 1956. In 1957 he hit .293 for the Dodgers with 10 home runs and 57 RBIs. He was a member of the National League All-Star team that season.

Cimoli’s first “move” as a major leaguer was with the Dodgers, going with the team to Los Angeles for the 1958 season and being the first major league player to bat on the West Coast when he led off on Opening Day in San Francisco. Cimoli hit .246 for the Dodgers in 1958, and was traded after the season to the St. Louis Cardinals for Wally Moon and Phil Paine.

Cimoli hit .275 for the Cardinals in 1959, with eight home runs and 72 RBIs. Following that season, he was traded with Tom Cheney to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Ron Kline.

In Pittsburgh, Cimoli was used primarily as the team’s fourth outfielder, hitting .267 with 14 doubles and 28 RBIs in 1960. He batted .250 in the 1960 World Series. During the 1961 season, the Pirates sent Cimoli to the Milwaukee Braves for Johnny Logan, and he finished the 1961 season with the Braves … only to be selected by the Kansas City Athletics in the 1961 Rule 5 Draft.

Gino Cimoli batted .275 for the Kansas City Athletics in 1962, leading the major leagues with 15 triples.

Gino Cimoli batted .275 for the Kansas City Athletics in 1962, leading the major leagues with 15 triples.

Cimoli hit .275 for the A’s in 1962, his best all-around season in the major leagues. He hit 20 doubles and 10 home runs, with 71 RBIs. His 15 triples were the most in the majors that season. He followed with another solid year in 1963, batting .263 with 19 doubles, 11 triples and 48 RBIs.

Cimoli was released by Kansas City in May of 1964 after appearing in only four games with the A’s, and signed as a free agent with the Baltimore Orioles, batting .138 in only 38 games. He was released by Baltimore after the 1964 season and signed with the California Angels, but played in only four games with the Angels in 1965 before retiring.

Cimoli finished his major league career with 808 hits and a .265 batting average.

 

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