«

»

Dec 26 2010

Martin Dihigo


Martin Dihigo

Martin Dihigo

 

(1905-1971)

The most versatile man to ever play the game of baseball was Martin Dihigo. The 6’4″, 190 lb. Cuban was literally a star at every position. When he first came to this country as a youth, he was best known as an infielder but later in his career he played more as an outfielder and a pitcher. A superb athlete, the right-hander excelled as a hitter, a pitcher, and in the field at every position he played. Neither before his appearance on the baseball horizon, nor since his departure from the scene, have his gifts afield ever been approached by a single player.

The tall, lanky, talented Cuban could do the five things that scouts look for in a ballplayer: run, field, throw, hit and hit with power. A superior batter, he led the Eastern Colored League in home runs in 1926 and tied for the lead in 1927. In 1929 he finished second in the American Negro League with 19 home runs while compiling a .386 batting average. The graceful athlete had an exceptionally strong arm, great range in the field and very good speed on the bases. Whether playing the outfield, the infield, or pitching, he was awesome.

Born in Havana on May 24, 1905, he also died in his native land on May 20, 1971. Considered by some to be the greatest all-around African-American player of all-time, and already a member of the Cuban and Mexican Halls of Fame, Dihigo was posthumously elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1977.

Years played:
1923-45

Positions played:
secondbase, outfield, pitcher, firstbase, thirdbase, shortstop, manager

Teams:
Cuban Stars (East), Homestead Grays, Hilldale, Darby Daisies, New York Cubans

Comparable Players:
No one. Pete Rose played five positions and was adequate at each, but Dihigo excelled at eight positions.


About the author

The Editors