Joe Greene

From BR Bullpen

James Elbert (Joe) Greene

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 6' 1", Weight 200 lb.

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Joe Greene gained his greatest fame catching for the Kansas City Monarchs for seven seasons out of a total of 15. He started his career with the Atlanta Black Crackers of the Negro Southern League in 1932, and played for the Homestead Grays for part of 1939. He joined the Monarchs in 1939 and stayed until 1947, when he played his final Negro League season in 1948 with the Cleveland Buckeyes. He played a final season of professional baseball in the Mandak League in 1951 before retiring.

He hit for average and power, and had a good reputation both as a defensive catcher and a handler of the great Monarchs pitching staffs. His only weakness as a player was said to be his slowness as a baserunner. He was among the home run leaders in a number of seasons in the NAL, made two appearances in the East-West Game, and was one of the Monarchs' hitting hitting stars in its four-game sweep of the 1942 Colored World Series.

Drafted into military service late in 1943 while in his baseball prime, Greene served until 1945 in the Army, serving in combat in the 92nd Division, and playing for the champion team in the Mediterranean Theater of Operations. He returned to the Monarchs in 1946, but was never as good a hitter as he was pre-war.

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