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Jesse Petty

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Jesse Lee Petty (The Silver Fox)

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Jesse Petty began his baseball career in 1916 with the unaffiliated San Antonio Bronchos of the class B Texas League. He spent four seasons in the minors before pitching nine innings with no decisions for the Cleveland Indians early in 1921. Jesse was returned to the Indianapolis Indians of the American Association, where he came of age. He spent the next five seasons with the Indians, having his career year in 1924, leading the league in wins with 29 and ERA with 2.83 while pitching 328 innings and appearing in 47 games.

Jesse was signed by the Brooklyn Robins of the National League at the start of the 1925 season and went 9-9 with a 4.88 ERA while appearing in 28 games during his first full season in the majors. He would be with the Brooklyn club through 1928, winning 54 tries and losing 59 before being traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates along with Harry Riconda for Glenn Wright on December 11, 1928.

Petty didn't fair well with the Pittsburgh club, losing 15 times and winning only 3 and was sold to the Chicago Cubs on August 24, 1930. Jesse won 1 and lost 3 and this ended the 35-year-old pitcher's seven year career in the majors with a 67-78 record and a 3.68 ERA while appearing in 207 games and pitching 1,208 innings.

Not quite ready to quit just yet, Jesse dropped back to the minors and toed the rubber from 1931 to '35, pitching for the Los Angeles Angels of the Pacific Coast League the Minneapolis Millers of the American Association. He closed out in 1935 at the age of 40 with the Chattanooga Lookouts of the Southern Association. His last run in the minors gave Jesse a total of 14 seasons down under and a record of 186-144 with a 3.35 ERA in 475 games while pitching 2,878 innings. It should be noted that in Jesse's last five years on the hill, when he was approaching 40 years of age, he pitched a low of 219 innings and a high of 267.

After Jesse's active playing days were over he became the last of two managers for the Knoxville Smokies in 1935, ending in eighth place with a 57-95 record. Again in 1936 he would be one of two managers of the same Knoxville club finishing in seventh place with a 46-72 record. Also in 1936, Jesse would be one of four managers for the Hopkinsville Hoppers of the Kitty League, finishing in sixth place with a 63-87 record.

During World War I, Jesse spent two years as a dispatch rider for the United States Army and was buried with full Military Honors on October 23, 1971 in St. Paul, MN.

[edit] Source

Encyclopedia of Minor League Baseball: Third Edition
"Goudy" Big League Baseball Card-No.90-

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