Sunday, December 19, 2010

Former New York Mets coach and 1945 NL MVP Phil Cavarretta dies at 94

Only a few months ago, I had reported that former New York Mets coach and 1945 National League MVP Phil Cavarretta was going strong at 94. Cavarretta took a quick turn for the worse after suffering a stroke a week ago and died December 18,2010, at a hospice care center in Lilburn, Georgia Saturday evening. He was 94.

Cavarretta had his peak year in 1945, batting .355 en route to earning National League MVP honors, leading the Chicago Cubs to the World Series, where he went 11-26 with one home run, taking the Detroit Tigers to the seventh game before losing. He amassed almost 2,000 hits during his 22-year career which spanned from 1934-1955.

He was signed right out of Chicago's Lane Tech high school and made his major league debut at the tender age of 18. He would not return to the minor leagues until 1956. He served three seasons as a player-manager for the Cubs from 1951-53, later spending an additional ten seasons as a minor league manager.

In New York, he worked for the Mets organization from 1973-78 as their full-time hitting instructor, roving the minor leagues after finishing spring training with the major league club.


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