9. Minnie Minoso
  1. General
  2. Awards
  3. Career Stats
  • Born: November 29, 1925 in La Habana, La Cuba
  • Weight: 175 lbs.
  • Height: 5'10"
  • Bats: R
  • Throws: R
  • Debut: April 19, 1949
  • Final Game: October 05, 1980
  • Gold Glove - 1957
  • Gold Glove - 1959
  • TSN All-Star - 1959
  • Gold Glove - 1960
  • TSN All-Star - 1960
 
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In terms of iconic figures, would have been wrong if we placed Minnie Minoso at number one?  Clearly, we didn't, but the native of Havana, Cuba, will always be one of the most revered athletes in the history of Chicago.

Minoso would make history as the first black Cuban in the Majors when he debuted for the Cleveland Indians in 1949.  When he was acquired by the White Sox in 1951, Minoso made history again as the first black player for the team.  That year, Minoso didn't just break the color barrier for the White Sox, as he would quickly become the most popular player for the team.  

Still considered a rookie, he finished second to Gil McDougald for the Rookie of the Year, though White Sox fans felt he was snubbed considering he had better stats than the Yankee.  Nevertheless, he was named an All-Star, batted .326, was fourth in MVP voting, and was the American League leader in Triples (14) and Stolen Bases (31).  As the spark plug of the "Go-Go” Sox teams of the 50s, Minoso would continue to provide a hot bat with four more .300 seasons in the 1950s and two more Stolen Base titles.  He would be named an All-Star in 1952, 1953, 1954, and 1957.  He was also fourth in MVP voting twice more in 1953 and 1954.

The Cuban was one of the most selfless players in the game's history.  He made an art of getting hit by pitches, leading the lead in that painful category ten times (eight of them as a White Sox).  He was also an excellent defensive player, winning the inaugural Gold Glove Award in 1957, and another one for the White Sox in 1960.

Minoso was traded to Cleveland in 1958, but would be traded back in 1960.  That year, he would lead the AL in Hits (184) for the only time in his career, and earn his seventh All-Star and final All-Star Game appearance.  He also batted over .300 for the last time, and again was fourth in MVP balloting.  He was dealt to St. Louis Cardinals in 1962, thus seemingly ending his play with the White Sox.

Or so it seemed.

He came back in 1964 but was used mostly as a Pinch Hitter.  He decided that he wasn't done playing baseball, and he went to Mexico, where he played for eight seasons.  He came back as a coach, and would actually play a few games at age 50.  That was a publicity stunt, and White Sox ownership did that again when at age 54, he played a game in 1980.  They looked to do that again in 1990 but was blocked by Major League Baseball.  

Overall, Minoso played 1,373 Games for the White Sox and would accumulate 1,523 Hits, 135 Home Runs, 171 Stolen Bases, and a .304 Batting Average.

The Bullet Points

  • Position: Third Base, Outfield
  • Acquired: Traded from the Cleveland Indians as part of a three-team trade. Chicago sent Dave Philley and Gus Zernial to the Philadelphia Athletics. Philadelphia sent Paul Lehner to Chicago. Philadelphia sent Lou Brissie to Cleveland. Cleveland sent Ray Murray and Sam Zoldak to Philadelphia 4/30/51.
  • Departed:

    Traded to the Cleveland Indians with Fred Hatfield for Al Smith and Early Wynn 12/4/57.

    Acquired (2): Traded from the Cleveland Indians with Dick Brown, Don Ferrarese, and Jake Striker for Norm Cash, Bubba Phillips, and John Romano 12/6/59.

    Departed (2): Traded to the St. Louis Cardinals for Joe Cunningham 11/27/61.

    Acquired (3): Signed as a Free Agent 4/8/64.

    Departed (3): Released 6/17/64.

    Acquired (4): Signed as a Free Agent 9/10/76.

    Departed (4): Released 10/6/76.

    Acquired (5): Signed as a Free Agent 10/3/80.

    Departed (5): Released 10/6/80.
  • Games Played: 1373
  • Notable Statistics: 893 Runs, 1,523 Hits, 260 Doubles, 79 Triples, 135 Home Runs, 808 Runs Batted In, 171 Stolen Bases, .304/.397/.468 Slash Line, 41.7 bWAR
  • Major Accolades and Awards:

    All-Star (1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1957 & 1960)

    Gold Glove (1957 & 1960)

    Highest bWAR for Position Players (1954)

    Most Hits (1960)

    Most Doubles (1957)

    Most Triples (1951, 1954 & 1956)

    Most Stolen Bases (1951, 1952 & 1953)

    Most Sacrifice Flies (1960 & 1961)

    Most Hit by Pitch (1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1956, 1957, 1960 & 1961)

    Highest Stolen Base Percentage (1955)

    Highest Power-Speed # (1951, 1952 & 1953)

    Most Putouts by a Leftfielder (1955, 1956 & 1959)

    Most Assists by a Leftfielder (1954, 1955, 1956 & 1960)

    Most Total Zone Runs by a Leftfielder (1954)

    Highest Range Factor per Game by a Leftfielder (1954)
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