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Earl Hersh

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Earl Walter Hersh

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Outfielder Earl Hersh was signed by the Milwaukee Braves as an amateur free agent before the 1953 season. The left-hander spent his first three seasons in the minors (1953-1955) and had his best year in 1955 with the Atlanta Crackers of the Southern Association, hitting for a .314 average along with 25 four-baggers while playing 155 games. This performance moved him along to the AAA Wichita Braves of the American Association in 1956 and the young man responded with a .307 batting average with 27 home runs in 128 outings. He got a late-season call-up to County Stadium and the Braves.

Unknown at the time 1956 was to be Hersh's one and only shot at the major leagues. Earl appeared in 7 games, got 13 plate appearances, had three base hits, all doubles, and hit for a .231 average. Earl recalled after doubling in his first major league at-bat and standing on second base that umpire Jocko Conlan said to him, "Nice hit rookie."

Wichita got Hersh back in 1957 and he again had a better than average year, hitting .269, busting 26 homers and playing 153 games. Earl was with the same team in the same ball park in 1958, but fell off to a .237 average with 17 home runs although he still played in 150 games. He didn't know it in 1959, but time was beginning to run out on him. He spent the 1959 season with two clubs, the same in 1960 and 1961 and decided to call it a career after the latter, ending his nine year minor league tenure with a .273 batting average along with 151 home runs in 1,176 games.

A graduate of West Chester University of Pennsylvania, Earl made his home in Westminster, MD. After several years as a high school teacher and coaching baseball, basketball and football, he became the supervisor of physical education and athletics for the Carroll County Board of Education in Maryland, retiring in 1992.

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Baseball Players of the 1950s

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