Lou Ciola

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Louis Alexander Ciola

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Biographical Information[edit]

Right-hander Lou Ciola attended the University of Richmond in Richmond, VA, from 1941 to 1943 before being signed as an amateur free agent by the Philadelphia Athletics during the 1943 season. He went right to the big leagues, where he made his debut on July 25, 1943. For the season, he appeared in 12 games with a 1-3 record and a 5.56 ERA. These figures would be Lou's major league career numbers, this being his only run in the big leagues.

Shortly after the 1943 season, Ciola became a member of the United States Navy, serving in the South Pacific during World War II. Lou returned in time to start the 1946 season, pitching for the Savannah Indians in the class A South Atlantic League and put up some not-so-hot numbers, 4-7 in 81 innings. The Athletics gave him his outright release on October 19, 1946. Ciola spent the next two seasons (1947-1948) with the Portsmouth Cubs of the class B Piedmont League, going 16-11 in '47 and 12-6 in '48. On November 24, 1948 he was drafted by the Omaha Cardinals from the Portsmouth club in the minor league phase of the 1948 Rule V Draft.

Lou was bound to spend the remaining six years of his professional baseball career in the minor leagues. Lou had three double-digit winning seasons, going 11-10 for the Omaha Cardinals of the class A Western League in 1949, and then 11-5 for the same outfit in 1951. Ciola also came up with probably his best year in 1952, again with Omaha, going 15-1 with a 3.45 ERA in 159 innings. Ciola spent two more seasons in the minors with identical won-loss records of 7-5 for the '53 and '54 years. This finished out his nine-season minor league run with an 87-57 record for a .604 winning percentage in 388 appearances.

After baseball, Ciola was a foreman for the transportation department for Hormel Company and co-owner of the Golden Parrot Restaurant in Austin, MN. He died from a heart attack while golfing at the Austin Country Club. Louis Alexander Ciola was 59 years of age at the time of his death.

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