Jack Urban

From BR Bullpen

1958 Topps #367 Jack Urban

Jack Elmer Urban

BR page

Biographical Information[edit]

Jack Urban tossed a no-hitter for the Birmingham Barons of the Southern League in 1954. He led one minor league in strikeouts and ERA and another in wins.

Urban broke into professional baseball with the 1949 Belleville Stags, going 7-8 with a 4.11 ERA and batting .272 with a homer and 23 RBI. He also briefly appeared with the McAlester Rockets, going 0-4 with a 4.50 ERA. In 1950, Urban had a big year. He was 23-5 with a 2.15 ERA for McAlester and batted .319/~.357/.573 as well with 8 home runs and 41 RBI in only 135 AB. He was even used as a pinch-hitter at times. He led the Sooner State League in ERA and strikeouts, whiffing 279 in 247 innings. He completed 24 of 27 starts and also made 10 relief appearances. He only gave up 160 hits and 9 homers, hitting nearly as many as he allowed. The only problem was control as he walked 158 batters, third in the SSL in that walk-happy era.

Urban split 1951 between the Binghamton Triplets (0-1, 9.00) and Quincy Gems (17-8, 3.63). He tied Alfred Dumouchelle and Bob P. Coleman for the Three-I League lead in wins. Urban's promising career came to a break for two years as he spent 1952 and 1953 in military service during the Korean War.

In 1954, Jack was 13-11 with a 4.95 ERA for the Birmingham Barons with the no-hitter being the highlight. The next season, he made it to AAA with the Denver Bears and had a 8-5, 4.39 record. In 1956, he was 11-8 with a 5.27 ERA for Denver. He began 1957 with the Bears, going 3-2 with a 4.04 ERA before his call-up to the Kansas City Athletics.

He made his big league debut on June 13th at the age of 28 and came into the league with a bang. Facing the Washington Senators, he tossed a complete game, allowing only two runs and five hits. Although the team as a whole finished 59-94 on the year, Urban did exceptionally well compared to that, finishing with a 7-4 record and a 3.34 ERA in 129 1/3 innings of work. He allowed only 111 hits and 45 walks as well.

He played his final game on August 6, 1959 for the St. Louis Cardinals against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Although he entered the league with a bang, he left with a disappointing game - in only a third of an inning, he allowed a total of five runs.

Urban spent most of 1959 in the minors with the Omaha Cardinals (3-7, 4.34) and Richmond Virginians (0-1). In 1960, he pitched for the Charleston Senators (2-1, 4.76) and Little Rock Travelers (2-0).

Overall, he was 89-61 in the minors and 15-15 in the majors.

After his death in 2006, he was cremated.

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