Original Colt Dean Stone Has Died

Dean Stone
Author of Houston Franchise’s 1st MLB Complete Game Shutout
~ Dead at Age 87

 

Pitcher Dean Stone is dead. He passed away at his home in Moline, Illinois at the age of 87 on August 21, 2018, following a lengthy illness. May his soul and spirit now rest in peace or soar at will as needed.

Stone was selected by the Houston Colt .45s from the St. Louis Cardinals in the November 27, 1961 Rule 5 player draft that stocked their club and the other new NL expansion team, the New York Mets, before both began playing in 1962.

On April 12, 1962, Dean Stone pitched the first complete game shutout in franchise history, besting the Chicago Cubs, 2-0, in Houston in the third game in the team’s first series. Stone gave up only 3 hits and 2 walks, whole striking out 9. It wasn’t the first club shutout. That happened the previous day when lefty Hal Woodeshick also shut out the Cubs, 2-0, but he only went 8 innings, needing Turk Farrell to pitch the 9th for the club’s first save in history.

A week later, on April 19, 1962, Stone again shutout the Cubs, 6-0, in Wrigley Field, but immediately from there, for whatever reason, went south as a reliable starter and was traded to the Chicago White Sox for pitcher Russ Kemmerer on June 25,1962.

Dean Stone was 2-3 with a 4.47 ERA in 15 games for the 1962 Houston Colt .45s. His eight season MLB career mark (1953-57, 1959, 1962-63) in 215 games was 29 wins, 39 losses, and an ERA of 4.47 (the same as his shorter term mark in Houston). For his career, he pitched 19 complete games with 5 shutout wins total. He also walked 373 and struck out 380 in 686 innings pitched.

Stone is best remembered today as the winning pitcher of the 1954 All Star Game, even though he never retired a single batter. This bizarre occurence took place at Cleveland Stadium on July 13, 1954 when Stone entered the game with two outs in the top of the 8th to face Duke Snider, with the American League trailing by 9-8. Red Schoendienst, the baserunner on third that Stone inherited, tried to steal home and Stone threw him out at the plate. The American League then scored three runs in the bottom of the 8th and won the game, 11–9, as Virgil Trucks hurled a scoreless 9th inning to save the win for the hardly perspiring pitcher of winning record credit.

 

********************

Bill McCurdy

Principal Writer, Editor, Publisher

The Pecan Park Eagle

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2 Responses to “Original Colt Dean Stone Has Died”

  1. Tom Hunter Says:

    It’s ironic that I learned today about Dean Stone’s passing on September 1st, the date he was born in 1930. I attended my very first major league game on April 12, 1962 and watched Dean Stone pitch the third game in Houston Colt .45s history. My friend Donald King and I were at that game and then went to the third game of the 2017 World Series, the first one back in Houston.

    In my mind’s eye, I can still see left-hander number “33” tossing that 3-hit shutout while striking out 9 to win 2-0. Rest in peace, Mr. Stone.

  2. Mark W. Says:

    That’s some admirably enduring friendship Tom!

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