Card: 1961 Topps #323
Samuel D. Esposito was born on the South Side of Chicago, and was a fan favorite as a hometown player for the White Sox. SABR.org says of Sammy Esposito: "For every 30-home-run hitter and 20-game winner, there is often a role player who, though contributing less, is embraced by the fans and given nearly unconditional support in return for those elusive attributes scrappiness and hustle. For the pennant-winning White Sox of 1959, that player was Sammy Esposito. Despite spending the majority of his career watching Nellie Fox and Luis Aparicio from the bench, the local boy endeared himself to South Side fans with heady play and solid defense." (SABR)
Sammy played a decade in the majors, almost all of it with the Chicago White Sox as a utility player, backing up Hall of Famers Nellie Fox and Luis Aparicio.
Sammy’s first game in the major leagues came on September 28, 1952, a month after he’d signed, at Comiskey Park. The third-place White Sox were taking on the seventh-place St. Louis Browns in their season finale, and only 10,343 fans turned out to watch. Esposito played shortstop and batted leadoff. He collected his first major-league hit in the game, a single off Dick Littlefield, who had taken over in the fourth inning for injured starter Duane Pillette. Inauspiciously,
Esposito was promptly thrown out attempting to steal second. He also struck out twice and made two errors, thereby fitting in well with the lackluster Sox, who lost the game, 12-1. Esposito’s hit was one of only five for the team. This brief appearance earned him the distinction of being the youngest player in the major leagues in 1952, as he was several months shy of his 21st birthday.
Sammy replaced starting third baseman Billy Goodman and batted twice in Game 1 of the 1959 World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers, going 0-for-2.
"(Sammy) later made good use of the insight collected during his playing days, becoming one of the most successful coaches in the history of the Atlantic Coast Conference over the course of a long career at North Carolina State."
Esposito is part of the Born in Chicago Tour – Next Stop
Sam is also part of the Chicago White Sox Players Tour – Go To the Next Stop
Sammy is also part of the Athletics Player Tour – Go To the Next Stop
See all Sammy’s baseball cards at TCDB
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