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Bert Haas

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Berthold John Haas

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[edit] Biographical Information

Bert Haas had a nine-year career in the major leagues that was interrupted at its peak by World War II, when he served in Italy. He was named to the All Star team in 1947.

Haas was born in 1914 in Naperville, IL, west of Chicago.

The Brooklyn Dodgers signed him in 1936. He played that year with Beatrice of the Nebraska State League, leading the league in hits. He had a good cup of coffee with the Dodgers in 1937, hitting .400 in 16 games. In 1938, he appeared with them in only one game.

In 1939 and 1940, he played with Montreal. In June of that year, he was included in the trade that brought Joe Medwick to the Dodgers.

In 1941, he hit .315 with the Columbus Red Birds, who won the Junior World Series. Teammates included Lou Klein and Bob Repass.

He came back to the majors in 1942 at age 28 as a regular with the Cincinnati Reds in wartime, hitting .239. The team average was .231. Playing third base, he was second on the team in RBI, behind Frank McCormick. The following year, he hit .262 on a team that hit .256 and finished 2nd in the league. McCormick had the highest batting average on the team.

Haas entered the Army in September 1943 and was discharged in December 1945. He came back in 1946 and 1947 for two more years as a regular with the Reds. In 1946, he played first base, hitting .264 on a team that hit .239. He led the team in runs scored, and was second on the team in RBI behind Grady Hatton. In 1947, he played more outfield than first base, hitting .286 on a team that hit .259. His batting average was second on the team behind Augie Galan.

He was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies, and in 1948 he appeared in 95 games with them, hitting .282 on a team that hit .259.

Haas was a key participant in an unusual play in April 1948 against the Boston Braves. Haas was playing third base, and there were runners on first and third. The batter struck out, but the ball got away from the catcher. The runner on third was out trying to score, and afterwards the alert Haas threw the ball to first to get the batter out, since he had not run to first. It's rare for a batter, who has struck out, to be thrown out at first, not by the catcher, but by the third baseman who is completing a double play.

In 1949, after he had appeared in two games with the Phillies, the New York Giants purchased him. He hit .260 as a role player with them, on a team that hit .261.

After the 1950 season, when Bert did not play in the majors, the Giants traded him to the Oakland Oaks of the Pacific Coast League. In June of 1951, the Chicago White Sox bought him from Oakland, and he spent two months with them, hitting under .200. At age 37, he was one of the oldest players in the league. He hit a home run in his final time at bat.

At some point, he apparently played with Montreal in 1951, too.

Lifetime, he appeared in 721 major league games from 1937 to 1951, playing 311 games at first base, 241 games at third base, and 97 games in the outfield.

The two most similar players to Haas, based on similarity scores, are Eric Owens who played 1995-2003, and Rowland Office, who played 1972-1983.

Haas managed the Albany Senators in 1955 and the High Point-Thomasville Hi-Toms in 1956. He began the 1957 seasons managing the Clovis Redlegs but the team disbanded on June 16 and he finished the season as the manager of the Wenatchee Chiefs, with the team winning the Northwestern League title that year. He returned to Wenatchee the following year and managed the team to a second place finish. He managed in the Mexican League in 1961 and then finished his minor league managerial career as the manager of the Lakeland Giants during the first part of the 1962 season, until he was replaced by Max Lanier.

[edit] Notable Achievements

  • NL All-Star (1947)

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