Colts Expansion Draftee Gernert Dies at 89

Dick Gernert
Born: September 28, 1928
Died: November 30, 2017

 

Sad news tonight. Another of the few surviving players from the original 1961 player draft has passed away. First baseman-outfielder  Dick Gernert is dead at age 89.

Thanks to reader, colleague, and frequent Eagle contributor Paul Rogers, former Dean of the SMU Law School, baseball author, and a SABR activist in all things baseball in North Texas, here’s a link to the Gernert obituary:

http://www.readingeagle.com/sports/article/dick-gernert-89-passes-away-had-long-career-in-baseball

Paul, we can’t thank you enough for your early advisory in this matter.

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Dick Gernert (BR/TR) played eight seasons (1952-59) for the Boston Red Sox as a 6’3″ firat baseman-outfielder and then finished his 11-total MLB years with short stints for the Chicago Cubs, Detroit Tigers, Cincinnati Reds, and Houston Colt .45s (1960-1962).

Gernert’s Houston Connection

October 10, 1961: Dick Gernert was drafted by the Houston Colt .45s from the Cincinnati Reds as the 31st pick in the 1961 expansion draft. He played in only 10 games for a 5-for-24 all-singles .208 batting average that resulted in only on run scored and one RBI.

May 19, 1962: Dick Gernert received his unconditional release as an active player by the Houston Astros. At age 33, his active MLB player career was ended, but a long history on the developmental side of baseball for Gernert was just beginning.

Rest in Peace, Dick Gernert, and thank you for your service to the original foundation building for this now 2017 World Series Championship club. There aren’t many of us out here who ever kicked in as much as five singles, a run, and a single RBI to the early cause, but you did. And we thank you for it.

 

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Bill McCurdy

Principal Writer, Editor, Publisher

The Pecan Park Eagle

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3 Responses to “Colts Expansion Draftee Gernert Dies at 89”

  1. Tom Hunter Says:

    Dick Gernert played first base for the Colt .45s in the first major league game I attended on April 12, 1962. He got a hit and scored a run in three at bats in game Houston won 2-0 over the Chicago Cubs behind Dean Stone’s 3-hit complete game shutout. I was one of the 7,838 fans who attended the game, which lasted 2 hours and 2 minutes. May number “17” rest in peace.

  2. Tom Kleinworth Says:

    Bill: thanks for letting us know the sad news of Dick Gernert’s passing. He brings back a lot of strong memories. As a 10-year-old, I was fascinated by our 1961 draft class and read everything I could on all of them – not just the ones like Farrell, Johnson, Mejías and Aspromonte, who made big contributions to the team in the early years, but also Taussig and Gernert and others who didn’t play for us as much. Any idea how many of our 1961 draft class are still alive?

  3. jeff share Says:

    well, at least he looked like a ball player

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