Ernie Fazio

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Ernest Joseph Fazio

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Biographical Information[edit]

Ernie Fazio was part of the Houston Colt .45's "youth movement" in 1962 and 1963; he also played for the Kansas City Athletics in 1966.

Ernie was born in Oakland, CA, went to high school there, and attended college a bit down the road at Santa Clara University during 1961 and 1962. Several other future major leaguers were there at the same time, including John Boccabella, Nelson Briles and Tim Cullen among others.

He was the first player ever signed by the newly-created Colt .45's. Ernie came to the majors very quickly, making his debut in July 1962. He was in 12 major league games that year and also played in 50 games for the AAA Oklahoma City 89ers.

The next season he was up all year as the regular second baseman for the Colt .45's. At 21, he was not the youngest regular as Rusty Staub was 19, and there were numerous youngsters trying for a job on the team, including the 19-year-old Joe Morgan who was also a second baseman and had also gone to high school in Oakland.

Ernie spent 1964 and 1965 back at Oklahoma City, showing some power with 23 home runs in 1965. He came back to the majors in 1966 for 27 games with Kansas City, but spent most of 1966 to 1969 in the high minors.

An interview [1] with him in 2007 revealed that he suffered a life-threatening virus in spring training of 1966, and that he worked at the time of the interview as a manager at a sanitation company. Early in his major league career he hurt his arm and although he played well in the minors, by the time he was ready to return, Houston had rightly decided Morgan would be the second baseman of the future. He roomed with Bo Belinsky while with the Hawaii Islanders and while in the majors became a friend of Joe DiMaggio.

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