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Article:Baseball Notebook: 3 Recent Baseball Deaths

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Walt Masterson

June 22, 1920 - April 5, 2008

Born in: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Died in: Durham, North Carolina
Major League Debut: May 8, 1939
Final Game: September 24, 1956

Walt Masterson compiled a 78-100 record with an ERA of 4.15. He died on April 5th at the Duke Medical Center at the age of 87 due to a stroke. Masterson had his best season in 1952 when he had a combined 10-9 record with the Boston Red Sox and Washington Senators. He also played for the Detroit Tigers. He struck out Mickey Mantle five straight times in 1951. The highlight of his career was in June of 1947 when he held the Chicago White Sox scoreless for 16 innings and then was replaced by Early Wynn (who won the game), which ended in the 18th inning with a 1-0 Senators victory.

Hersh Lyons

July 23, 1915 - April 8, 2008

Born in: Fresno, California
Died in Inglewood, California
Major League Debut: April 17, 1941
Final Game: April 17, 1941

Hersh Lyons, who died at the age of 92 on April 8th of this year, retired on the same day he made his major league debut, as he pitched 1 1/3 innings on April 17, 1941 He faced 8 batters, but still had a 0.00 ERA, so he must have pitched out of trouble the one day. He literally was in majors long enough for a cup of coffee, and a small cup of coffee at that. He pitched for the St. Louis Cardinals, and even though he was on the playing field for only a few minutes, he lived the dream that baseball players everywhere dream of even if it was for a very short time.

Tommy Holmes

March 29, 1917 - April 14, 2008

Born in: Brooklyn, New York
Died in: Boca Raton, Florida
Major League Debut: April 14, 1942
Final Game: September 28, 1952

Tommy Holmes died today in Boca Raton, Florida at the age of 91. He died of natural causes. Holmes is well known for hitting in 37 consecutive games in 1945, which was the record until Pete Rose broke the record in 1978 with a 44 game streak. In 1945, he hit .352, but Phil Cavaretta won the batting title that year with a .355 mark. Holmes seldom struck out and in 1945, he struck out only 9 times in 636 at bats striking out every 70 at bats. He led the NL in home runs in 1945 with 28 roundtrippers.

In his 11 year career, he hit 88 home runs, drove in 581 runs, and hit .302 during his career. He was a two time NL All Star and was No. 2 in the 1945 MVP voting. He played in the 1948 World Series with the Boston Braves and in his final season, he played for the Brooklyn Dodgers in the 1952 World Series. According to his daughter, Holmes watched baseball games on television until the time of his death.'

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