- Bats Right, Throws Right
Outfielder Dalmiro Finol was an amateur and professional star in Venezuela in the 1940s; he was one of the country's top players of that era who never tried his hand in the US.
Finol was one of the Héroes del 41 who won the 1941 Amateur World Series for the Venezuelan national team. In the 1944 Amateur World Series, he led all players with 15 RBI and hit .368 as Venezuela won another Gold, though this one was tainted by supposedly biased umpiring that led both Cuba and Mexico to withdraw. He helped Venezuela win the 1945 Amateur World Series as well. Dalmiro played for Cerveceria Caracas when the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League was formed in 1946; he hit .238/?/.405 that summer with 7 home runs and 24 RBI in 32 games. He won the league's first home run title, two ahead of runners-up Guillermo Vento and Marvin Williams. He was third in RBI behind Williams and Chico Carrasquel. He fell to .242/?/.318 in the winter of 1946-1947 but still drove in 26, two behind leader Carrasquel and one behind Williams.
In 1947-1948, Finol batted .284/?/.404 with four home runs and 35 RBI in 35 games; he led in RBI by 6 over Vidal López. He tied for 4th in homers behind Americans Luke Easter, Henry McHenry and Roy Campanella. He hit .320/?/.583 for Caracas in 1948-1949, going deep 7 times in 29 games. He lost the home run race by one to Jim Pendleton, was second in RBI (3 behind López), tied for 5th with 21 runs, was third in extra-base hits (13, trailing Pendleton and John Ritchey) and was second to Pendleton in slugging. The Caribbean Series was formed in 1949 and Finol was one of Venezuela's top performers, going 8 for 25 with a double, home run, six runs and four RBI. He led the team in hits, homers (tied), RBI (tied) and runs. For the Series, he tied Lester Lockett, Piper Davis, Sam Jethroe and Monte Irvin for third in runs.
Dalmiro kept on slamming the ball in 1949-1950 (.292, .485 SLG, 10 2B, 7 HR, 29 R, 37 RBI in 46 G). He tied for third in home runs, two behind López and Howard Easterling, and was third in RBI (behind the same two players). The following winter, he hit .313/?/.450 with only 21 RBI, though he had 5 homers and 32 runs. He tied Camaleón Garcia, Héctor Benítez, Ford Garrison and López for 7th in home runs. In 1951-1952, he batted .383/?/.550 with 5 home runs and 20 RBI in 38 contests. Despite limited playing time, he tied Eddie Basinski for 4th in dingers behind Russ Kerns, Wilmer Fields and Pendleton.
In the 1952 Caribbean Series, Finol was 0 for 7, backing up Fields, Davis and Benítez in the outfield (as did Vento). Cerveceria Caracas became the Leones del Caracas in 1952-1953 and the veteran slugger hit .266/?/.345 with just one home run in 57 games, though he did have 13 doubles, 36 runs and 34 RBI. He tied Harry Elliott for 4th in the LVBP in two-baggers and he ranked 6th in runs. In the 1953 Caribbean Series, he was 4 for 21 with a home run and 3 RBI; he had Venezuela's lone homer and tied Davis for third on the team in RBI. He was one of just three Venezuelans in the starting lineup (alongside SS Carrasquel and 3B Pompeyo Davalillo) as his fellow outfielders were Gale Wade and Milt Nielsen.
Finol switched clubs in 1953-1954 and hit .260/?/.416 with 11 doubles, 10 home runs and 47 RBI in 70 games for the Gavilanes. He tied Wally Moon and Ed Bailey for 6th in home runs and ranked fifth in RBI. Leaving Venezuela for the only time for a baseball season, he hit .291/.354/.435 for the Mexican League's Sultanes de Monterrey. His 61 RBI tied Leon Kellman for 4th in Mexico. He had only four singles in 32 at-bats back with the Leones in 1954-1955 then moved to the Navegantes del Magallanes and hit .248/?/.298 with no home runs in 121 at-bats for them. Despite that performance, he still saw regular action in the 1955 Caribbean Series, going 2 for 13 with a run and a RBI as his club's lightest hitter. Now 35 years old, his glory days were clearly behind him. Dalmiro played one more winter, hitting .281/?/.333 with no home runs for the 1955-1956 Navegantes then retired.
From 1946-1956, he was 4th in runs (240, after Vento, Carrasquel and Garcia), 4th in doubles (70, trailing the same three in a different order), 4th in hits (475 behind the same trio), first in home runs (48, 12 more than #2 Garcia), first in RBI (296, 37 more than runner-up Vento), tied for 9th in steals (29), third in extra-base hits (121, trailing Garcia and Carrasquel) and 3rd in total bases (695, after Carrasquel and Garcia). Though many players have played a lot more games in Venezuela, with 7 having more than twice as many at-bats through 2012-2013, Finol is still 25th in league history in dingers and 34th in RBI at the end of the 2012-2013 campaign.
Finol was posthumously elected to the Salón de la Fama del Béisbol Venezolano in 2012 as part of the 9th class, alongside Luis Sojo. He had been inducted as part of the Héroes del 41 team in 2006 and was the 4th member to win induction individually as well.