Thursday, June 16, 2011

Almendares' Sam Jethroe twice led Cuban League in stolen bases

 June 16: On this day in 2001, Sam Jethroe died in Erie, Penn.

Jethroe, who played for the Cleveland Buckeyes -- among other teams -- in the Negro leagues, and for the Boston Braves (1950-52) and Pittsburgh Pirates (1954) in the majors, played three seasons in Cuba.

He played for Almendares in 1947-48 and 1948-49, leading the Cuban League in stolen bases both seasons with 22 and 32 steals, respectively, according to Who's Who in Cuban Baseball, 1878-1961. And his 1948-49 squad won the Cuban League pennant. He also played for Cienfuegos in 1954-55.

In the majors, Jethroe, at age 32, became the oldest rookie of the year when he won the award in 1950 with the Braves.

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