Thursday, October 11, 2012

#294 Hank Foiles



Don't let the pink framed card, the round face and the fact that you probably never heard of him cause you to sell him short. Hank Foiles is an interesting guy. He was a Yankee signee in 1947 but the Yanks were not one of the seven franchises he played for. In eleven major league seasons, three or four of them as a platoon catcher Foiles batted .243 in 608 games.

Ok, now for the interesting stuff....

-Foiles made the 1957 National League All Star team since he was batting .313 at the break with the Pirates. He singled as a pinch hitter in the ninth and scored the final run in a 6-5 loss.

-He was befriended by Joe DiMaggio when he was a Yankee farmhand and the two remained friends throughout DiMaggio's life.

-He was on the roster of four clubs during the 1960 season. Traded after the '59 campaign by the Pirates to the A's he was traded back to the Pirates in June of '60. But Foiles was to be assigned to the minors and he refused. The Pirates allowed him to engineer his own trade so the next day he was dealt to the Indians. In late July Foiles was traded again, this time to the Tigers. To add to the fun he was drafted after the season by the Orioles. So, to sum it up... between December of 1959 and November of 1960 Foiles followed this path: Pirates->Athletics->Pirates-Indians-Tigers-Orioles!!!

-His '60 stay with the Indians was actually his second go-round with that club. He had been with the for several years in the early 1950s. He was purchased by the Reds from the Orioles in 1962 and that made the second time he was with that franchise as well. He'd debuted as a Red in 1953 after being aquired from the Yanks. He finished with the Angels in 1964.

-He was an amateur battery-mate of Herb Score in Virginia and starred in several sports.

-He's written an autobiography which received some nice reviews.

-Known as a good through the mail signer Foiles has refused to sign one card, the 1991 Crown Oil Oriole card. He maintains that the company did not receive permission to include him (or any other player for that matter) and he was not compensated for is being included. (Somewhere in my tightly packed card/memorabilia closet I have that 500+ card set. If I had more ambition I'd dig it out and scan his).

You go, Hank!!! Rock that pink '59 Topps.



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