McCurdy: Larry Miggins’ two big-league homers

From SABR member Bill McCurdy at The Pecan Park Eagle on November 9, 2013:

You fellow members of the Larry Dierker Chapter of SABR (The Society for American Baseball Research) know of local baseball legend Larry Miggins as the tall and eloquent Irishman who is also one of the regulars at our monthly chapter meetings in downtown Houston. For those of you who do not know him, Larry is a former Houston Buff and St. Louis Cardinal – and one of the men who played in Jackie Robinson’s first organized baseball games when Jackie began as a member of the 1946 Montreal Royals. Miggins played third base for the Jersey Giants that fine April day.

“Robinson should have remembered me – and also been grateful for the fact I was there that day,” Miggins will tell you. “Because my manager was making me play deep, I managed to kick in two infield bunt base hits to his first day totals on the road to Brooklyn.”

Miggins had one “oh for one” time at bat with the Cardinals in 1948 and then returned for 42 games as an outfielder for the 1952 St. Louis NL club. That was it for Miggins and the majors, but remember too, these were the days of the reserve clause, when the Cardinals controlled some of the best talent available to the entire 16-club big league scene.  If you got a chance at all at the big club, at all, and many did not, you had to almost play like a future Hall of Famer in the big club short-term to stick – and Larry didn’t get that done. He batted only .229 in 42 games and 96 official times at bat in 1952 and, also like all the others bound to one club back then with no other in-the-field options, Larry never got another shot at the big leagues.

But while he was there, Larry Miggins also hit two homers off two of the greatest players in the game.

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Originally published: November 11, 2013. Last Updated: November 11, 2013.