You Are Here > Baseball-Reference.com > Bullpen > Judy Johnson - BR Bullpen

Judy Johnson

From BR Bullpen

Jump to: navigation, search
Johnson at the 1924 Negro League World Series.

William Julius Johnson

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 11", Weight 150 lb.

Inducted into Hall of Fame in 1975

BR page

[edit] Biographical Information

"No matter how much the pressure, no matter how important the play or the throw or the hit, Judy could do it when it counted." Cool Papa Bell, The Negro Leagues Book.

William Julius "Judy" Johnson was a third baseman in the Negro Leagues.

Johnson was born in Snow Hill, MD. Although his father wanted him to be a boxer, Johnson, who was 5' 11" and only weighed 150 lb., was far better suited for a career in baseball. After being a dock worker during World War I, Johnson began his baseball career in 1918, reaching the top-level Negro Leagues in 1921 with the Hilldale Daisies, a team for which he played through 1929.

In 1930 Johnson was a player-coach for the Homestead Grays, and in that capacity he discovered Josh Gibson. From 1935 through his last season in 1938, Johnson was the captain of the Pittsburgh Crawfords, one of the greatest franchises of all time. Although the Crawfords also included fellow Hall of Famers Gibson, Oscar Charleston and Cool Papa Bell, Johnson was the glue that held the team together. His vital role on the team was most apparent in the 1935 Negro World Series, when he hit a clutch single to win the sixth game with the Crawfords down 3 games to 2 against the New York Cubans. The Crawfords won the series in seven games.

Johnson was a precise contact hitter who batted reached an average of .416 in 1929, but his greatest ability was his fielding. Along with Ray Dandridge and Ghost Marcelle, Johnson was one of the greatest fielding third basemen in the Negro Leagues. He was also one of the smartest men in baseball, able to compensate for any physical shortcomings with his ability to think faster than his opponents, particularly in pressure situations.

Although Johnson retired nine years before the integration of the major leagues, he was eventually able to apply his baseball knowledge in the majors, becoming the first African American to coach in Major League Baseball (1954). He also was one of the most accomplished talent scouts in baseball, responsible for signing Bill Bruton and Dick Allen.

Johnson retired in 1973 and was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1975, the sixth Negro Leaguer so honored. Like Pop Lloyd before him, he was known for his exemplary character off the field. He died at age 89 in Wilmington, DE.

Johnson's home in Marshallton, DE is now listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The house is located at the intersection of Newport Road and Kiamensi Avenue.

[edit] Negro Leagues Career Statistics

Year Team League G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB BA SLG
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
1918 Atlantic City
Hilldale
independent
independent
1
2
4
4
0
0
1
1
0
1
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
1
.250
.500
.250
.750
1921 Hilldale independent 28 95 12 25 2 5 2 14 1 6 .263 .453
1922 Hilldale independent 31 100 11 29 2 1 0 12 2 9 .290 .349
1923 Hilldale ECL 61 212 32 58 9 1 2 30 5 14 .274 .354
1924 Hilldale ECL 80 307 58 106 27 6 5 55 10 22 .345 .521
1925 Hilldale ECL 72 275 59 104 17 11 5 23 7 23 .378 .575
1926 Hilldale ECL 89 344 65 113 21 6 1 46 12 22 .328 .433
1927 Hilldale ECL 59 222 29 55 5 2 1 15 2 18 .248 .302
1928 Hilldale independent 60 221 21 51 9 4 1 23 2 7 .231 .321
1929 Hilldale
Homestead Grays
ANL
ANL
51
4
210
16
54
1
81
4
11
0
1
0
5
0
32
0
10
0
5
0
.250
.250
.250
.250
1930 Homestead Grays independent 27 112 16 33 3 3 0 1 1 6 .295 .375
1931 Hilldale independent 50 179 23 44 2 3 1 5 3 3 .246 .307
1932 Pittsburgh Crawfords EWL 23 93 19 29 1 1 1 9 1 6 .312 .376
1933 Pittsburgh Crawfords NNL 40 151 19 29 5 0 0 14 2 6 .238 .272
1934 Pittsburgh Crawfords NNL 51 192 25 51 11 2 1 13 4 7 .266 .359
1935 Pittsburgh Crawfords NNL 34 130 19 30 6 1 2 9 1 6 .231 .338
1936 Pittsburgh Crawfords NNL 30 112 16 19 0 1 0 1 2 7 .170 .188
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Totals 17 seasons 792 2979 479 863 132 48 27 302 65 169 .290 .393
per 162 g 4.90 162 609 98 176 27 10 6 62 13 35 .290 .393

Sources:

  • 1918, 1921-1922: Seamheads.com, from research by Gary Ashwill and Kevin Johnson
  • 1923-1936Shades of Glory, Hogan et al., pp. 390–393, except 1923 season from subsequent research by Patrick Rock

[edit] Related Sites

Some or all content from this article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Judy Johnson".

Personal tools