Neal Watlington

From BR Bullpen

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Julius Neal Watlington

  • Bats Left, Throws Right
  • Height 6' 0", Weight 195 lb.

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Biographical Information[edit]

Catcher Neal Watlington had a cup of coffee with the Philadelphia Athletics as a 30 year-old in 1953.

Watlington was born on Christmas Day 1922 in Yanceyville, North Carolina, not far from Danville, Virginia near the Virginia border, and began his baseball career with the Mayodan Millers of the Bi-State League in 1941. However, he put his baseball career on hold to serve in World War II, earning a Purple Heart during that time. He returned to the minors in 1947, hitting .328 for the Danville Leafs. After posting a .302 average for the Knoxville Smokies in 1948, he spent the next two summers with the Jersey City Giants. Acquired by the Athletics prior to the 1952 season, he reached the majors the following year. He made his big league debut on July 10th against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park, singling off Hal Brown in his first at-bat in the majors. Overall, he in 21 games for Philadelphia, posting a .159 batting average.

Following his stint in the majors, Watlington played several more seasons in the International League with the Ottawa A's, Richmond Virginians, and Rochester Red Wings. He died in his hometown just days after his 97th birthday.

According to relatives, Watlington was the cousin of a Gypsy Carter Watlington (born in Pittsylvania County, VA, 1911; died Lancaster County, PA, August, 1987), who played minor league ball and later was a scout for the Chicago White Sox.

Related Sites[edit]

Yanceyville’s Neal Watlington - His Summer in the Show