Monday, May 16, 2005

 

May 16th, 1919

Stubby Overmire Born


Frank Overmire's nickname comes from his height. He is traditionally listed at 5'7" although there are suggestions he was as short as 5'2" which would definitely explain it. He was a change-up artist who is the answer to a rather obscure trivia question: Who is the second most famous pitcher to come out of Western Michigan University? (They're the Broncos, if you're curious.) The most famous pitcher to ever pitch for WMU is Jim Bouton, and while he's less famous for his pitching than his writing, it’s safe to say he's more famous than all the other Broncos put together, including the only man from WMU to play in the Majors last season, John Vander Wal.

Overmire was actually a pretty good pitcher in his own right for a couple of years, serving as a reliever for the World Champion Tigers in 1945 and accumulating four saves, which amazingly was good enough for third in the league. Overmire's change-up and exceptional control (he was thrice among the league leaders in BB/9) served him well, and although he had a terrible 1949 (1-3, 9.87) which earned him a trip to the St. Louis Browns, he recovered with his best year ever in 1950. Although he went just 9-12 for an awful 58-96 team, Overmire's 4.19 ERA was good for 118 ERA+, ninth in the league as he appeared in thirty-one games, starting nineteen of them. A midseason trade to the Yankees in 1951 saw him pitch ineffectively and he saw no action in the Yanks' victory over the Giants in the World Series, and rejoined the Browns in 1952, the last year of his career.

After his career he managed in the Tigers' minor league system and died in 1977 at the age of fifty-eight in
Florida.





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