Porter Moss

From BR Bullpen

Porter Moss (Ankleball, Submarine)

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 11", Weight 185 lb.

Porter Moss was a three-time All-Star in the Negro Leagues.

Moss debuted with the Cincinnati Tigers in 1934. He was 1-3 in 1936 then 3-5 in 1937. Despite his poor record, he got 30,890 votes for the 1937 East-West Game, second among pitchers behind only Ted Trent. In that game, Moss tossed the final six innings for the West after relieving Hilton Smith in a 7-2 loss. Moss gave up nine hits and four runs (one earned) in six innings and was 0 for 2 at the plate. He set a record for most hits ever allowed in an East-West Game. He was 2-3 in the 1937-1938 California Winter League.

In 1938, the submariner moved to the Memphis Red Sox and was 4-2. In California that winter, he was 3-0 for the Philadelphia Royal Giants, posting the league's best record. Moss was 2-1 for Memphis in 1941 then 5-6 in 1942.

In the first East-West Game of 1942, Moss relieved Hilton Smith in the 4th with a 1-1 tie. He allowed one run in two innings, struck out two but walked three and left with a 2-1 deficit. Chet Brewer replaced him. The West lost, 5-2, and Satchel Paige took the defeat.

Moss had a 5-3 record for Memphis in 1943. In the 1943 East-West Game, Porter entered with a 2-1 lead in the top of the 9th, replacing Smith for the third time in an All-Star contest. He entered with two on and two outs. Ankleball got Vic Harris to fly to Willard Brown to end the game, earning himself a save.

Moss was 1-0 in California in 1943-1944. He was having a career year in 1944 (8-6, 2.34, 65 K) when tragedy struck in mid-July. He was on a train when a fight broke out over a nearby dice game. A wayward shot struck the pitcher. He was taken for treatment by a doctor turned him down because he was black. He died before he could be brought to another physician; he was only 34 years old. Despite not finishing his last season, he was fourth in the Negro American League in strikeouts and third in ERA behind George Jefferson and Gentry Jessup.

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