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59 Years After Their Best, Wally Moon And Tito Francona Pass On. They Are recalled Fondly.

February 15, 2018

Two favorites, two really good players, Wally Moon and Tito Francona each with a glorious ’59, have died 59 years after, in early 2018.

Moon, who played on 3 Dodgers’ title teams, was a major contributor to the first L.A. crown in 1959.

He hit what became “Moon Shots”, Wally a left handed batter taking advantage, by tailoring his swing, of the short left field, at the L.A. Coliseum, where the Dodgers played that title season.

Francona, playing for the second place Indians hit a remarkable .363 in 1959, falling 34 official at bats from that season’s A.L. batting crown, which went to Harvey Kuenn with a .353 mark.

That season the White Sox won the A.L. pennant, losing in 6 to L.A. in the World Series.

Moon caught Luis Aparichio’s fly ball for the final out. L.A. won their first 3 W.S. in L.A, before losing in 4 straight games to the Baltimore Orioles in ’66, a team whose shortstop was Luis Aparichio.

Francona’s son Terry managed 2 title teams with Boston, but father Tito left the earth, after bitterly disappointing Francona/Indians’ post-season losses in each of the last two seasons, and with the team, still sans a title since 1948.

I recall each player fondly, part of a time I liked baseball so much.

 

Tito Francona pictured above.

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