CMG Worldwide Welcomes You to the Official Website of Dizzy Dean
Born Jay Hanna Dean on January 16, 1910 in Lucas, Ark., Dean attended public school only through second grade. His colorful personality and eccentric behavior earned him the nickname “Dizzy”.
Dean made his professional debut in 1930 and worked his way up to the major leagues that same year, throwing a complete game three-hitter for a win with the Cardinals.Dean became a regular starter for St. Louis in 1932, leading the league in shutouts and innings pitched. It was also the first of four straight seasons he led the league in strikeouts.In 1934, Dean went 30-7, leading the league in wins with a 2.66 ERA to win the National League MVP Award. Dean was thought of as a leader of the “Gashouse Gang” a nickname given to the ’34 Cardinals.
Along with his older brother Paul, also a pitcher on the team and often referred to in the media as “Daffy”, the Cardinals became hardworking, gritty players during the Great Depression. The team captured the National League pennant and beat the Tigers in the World Series.
Dean won 28 and 24 games in 1935 and 1936 respectively, finishing second in MVP voting in both seasons. In 1937, Dean suffered an injury after being hit in the toe by a line drive. Trying to return from the injury too quickly, Dean hut his arm and largely lost his effectiveness.Traded to the Cubs in 1938, Dean spent four seasons in Chicago, including appearing in the 1938 World Series, which the Cubs lost to the Yankees. He appeared again for the St. Louis Browns in 1947 as a promotional stunt, pitching just four innings before retiring.The four-time All-Star won 150 games in 12 seasons with 1,163 strikeouts and a 3.02 career ERA. Known for his practical jokes, colorful baseball predictions and confident attitude, Dean became a radio and television announcer after his playing career was over. He was popular with audiences despite often mispronouncing players’ names. He was the voice of the St. Louis Cardinals, New York Yankees and the CBS and NBC Game of the Week from the 1940s through 1965.
Dean was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1953. He died on July 17, 1974 at the age of 64
Quotes by Dizzy Dean:
- “Son, what kind of pitch would you like to miss.”
- “It ain’t braggin’ if you can back it up.”
- “I never keep a scorecard or the batting averages. I hate statistics. What I got to know, I keep in my head.”
- “Anybody who’s ever had the privilege of seeing me play knows that I am the greatest pitcher in the world.”
- “All ballplayers want to wind up their career with the Cubs, Giants or Yankees. They just can’t help it.”
- “I ain’t what I used to be, but who the hell is?”
- “I won twenty-eight games in 1935 and I couldn’t believe my eyes when the Cards send me a contract with a cut in salary. Mr. Rickey said I deserved a cut because I didn’t win thirty games.”
- “It puzzles me how they know what corners are good for filling stations. Just how did they know gas and oil was under there?”
- “Let the teachers teach English and I will teach baseball. There is a lot of people in the United States who say ‘isn’t’ and they ain’t eating.”“Mr. Rickey, I’ll put more people in the park than anybody since Babe Ruth.”
- “Son, what kind of pitch would you like to miss?”
- “Sure I eat what I advertise. Sure I eat Wheaties for breakfast. A good bowl of Wheaties with bourbon can’t be beat.”
- “The doctors x-rayed my head and found nothing.”
- “The dumber a pitcher is, the better. When he gets smart and tries to experiment with a lot of different pitches, he’s in trouble. All I ever had was a fastball, a curve and a change up and I did pretty good.”
- “The good Lord was good to me. He gave me a strong body, a good right arm and a weak mind.”
- “He slud into third.”
- “Well what’s wrong with ain’t? And as for saying ‘Rizzuto slud into second’ it just ain’t natural. Sounds silly to me. Slud is something more than slid. It means sliding with great effort.”
Quotes about Dizzy Dean:
- “When ole Diz was out there pitching it was more than just another ball game. It was a regular three-ring circus and everybody was wide awake and enjoying being alive.”– Pepper Martin
- “You were attracted by the graceful rhythm of his pitching motion; the long majestic sweep of his arm as he let the ball fly; the poised alertness after the pitch. That was what counted and you knew it when batter after batter swung ineptly at pitches they couldn’t even see.”— Editor of the New York Times
- “As a ballplayer, (Dizzy) Dean was a natural phenomenon, like the Grand Canyon or the Great Barrier Reef. Nobody ever taught him baseball and he never had to learn. He was just doing what came naturally when a scout named Don Curtis discovered him on a Texas sandlot and gave him his first contract.”— Red Smith
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