Player: Barone, Dick
Card: NO CARD AVAILABLE
“As a boy, (Dick) Barone was obsessed with baseball: ‘we could pretty much play it year round. And we did. If there was no one around to play with, I would spend hours throwing a tennis ball against the gutter and working on my fielding.’” – Baseball Historian Joe Schuster (SABR Baseball Biography, ‘Dick Barone’)
“Dick Barone… rates with me as the best defensive shortstop out of the major leagues… [He will] be a fine prospect for the majors. Good hands, great arm and speed—he’s got them all.” – Larry Shepard, quoted in the Joplin (MO) Globe, January 22, 1960
Richard Anthony Barone (b. October 13, 1932 in San Jose, CA – d. April 23, 2015 Hollister, CA) was an American professional shortstop and second baseman. He played for a decade in minor league baseball; his career started in 1951, had a break in 1953 and 1954 due to military service during the Korean War, and went through 1962. He had a three-game major league career with the 1960 Pittsburgh Pirates, a team which went on to win the World Series.
Dick was a light-hitting shortstop in the Pirate organization and batted just .204 as the starting shortstop for the Pirates’ AAA Columbus affiliate in 1960. But on September 6th, as the Pirates fought for the National League pennant, starting shortstop (and NL MVP) Dick Groat suffered a broken left wrist when struck by a Lew Burdette pitch. For the remainder of the month, utility infielder Dick Schofield took over as the Pirates’ starting shortstop while Barone was recalled from Columbus to back up Schofield.
Barone made his major league debut on September 22nd, as a pinch-runner. He made his second appearance, and only major league start, on September 27th. He played shortstop, had 3 putouts, 2 assists and no errors but went hitless in 5 at-bats with one strikeout. He left for a pinch-hitter (Smoky Burgess) in the bottom of the 13th inning in a game the Pirates would win, 4-3, in 16 innings.
Barone entered his final game on September 30th, in the 8th inning, replacing second baseman Bill Mazeroski, as Barone played shortstop while Schofield moved to second base; he was hitless in his only at-bat. Those three games constituted his entire major league career. All told, he was hitless in six at-bats and flawless in the field. He was not on the Pirates’ 1960 World Series roster, as Groat returned and Schofield resumed his reserve role.
He lived to see grandson Daniel Barone make his MLB debut in 2007.
Dick is part of the Military Service during Wartime Tour – go to the Next Stop
See all Dick’s baseball cards at TCDB
Visit a random Italian American MLB player: