On this day in Alabama history: Harry ‘the Hat’ Walker was born

On this day in Alabama history: Harry ‘the Hat’ Walker was born
Harry "the Hat" Walker (1916-1999) was a professional baseball player whose playing career spanned more than 20 years. He played for the Phillies, Cardinals, Cubs, Astros and Reds. Walker began and was the first coach of the baseball program at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. (From Encyclopedia of Alabama, Alabama Sports Hall of Fame)

October 22, 1916

Harry Walker, who along with his older brother Fred “Dixie” Walker are the only siblings to have won Major League batting titles, was born in Pascagoula, Mississippi. He lived most of his life in the Birmingham area. Walker made his big league debut with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1940. After the 1943 season, he served in the Army during World War II and was awarded a Bronze Star and Purple Heart. After the war, he played for the Cardinals in the 1946 World Series, in which St. Louis defeated the Boston Red Sox. His best year came in 1947, when he led the National League with a .363 batting average. Following his playing days, he managed in St. Louis, Pittsburgh and Houston. Walker also began the baseball program at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and served as the UAB coach from 1979-1986. He died in Leeds in 1999.

Read more at Encyclopedia of Alabama.

Harry Walker baseball card from Bowman Gum, 1950. (Wikipedia)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more on Alabama’s Bicentennial, visit Alabama 200.

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