Dick Groat Obituary – On April 23, 2022 at age 91, Dick Groat made history as one of baseball’s great players by passing away and leaving behind his legacy of two World Series championships, an MVP award, and being seen as a true leader both on and off the field. We celebrate his life here and highlight some key highlights from his remarkable career.
Early Life and Education
Richard Morrow “Dick” Groat was born November 4, 1930, in Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania. At Swissvale High School he excelled in baseball, basketball and football; following graduation he attended Duke University to play both sports; becoming the first athlete ever at Duke to achieve All-American status in both. In 1952, this feat made history!
Professional Baseball Career Opportunities.
Dick Groat was signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1952 and made his Major League Baseball debut that same year. Quickly becoming an integral member of their lineup – playing shortstop and batting second – in his second season, he batted an astounding.315 average to earn All-Star Game honors.
Over the following years, Groat continued to build upon his game, leading the league in hits in 1959 and winning National League MVP award that year. That same year he helped guide the Pirates to their first World Series championship since 1925 by hitting.338 during postseason play.
In 1962, Groat was traded to the St. Louis Cardinals, playing two seasons there before returning to Pittsburgh in 1965 and retiring with a lifetime batting average of.286, 2,138 hits, and 829 RBIs.
Off the Field
Dick Groat was known for his leadership and sportsmanship throughout his baseball career, earning him the moniker “Captain Groat.” Additionally, he was actively involved with various charities and organizations within his community after retiring. After baseball retirement he served as color commentator for the Pittsburgh Pirates while simultaneously coaching men’s basketball at Duquesne University from 1974 – 1982.
Dick Groat has had an indelible mark on baseball that cannot be overstated. His impressive career and leadership both on and off the field inspired many players and fans alike, which earned him induction into both the College Basketball Hall of Fame in 1972 and later into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1985. He will long be remembered as one of its greats; truly one of its icons!
Dick Groat’s death is a great loss for baseball, yet his legacy will endure for generations to come. A true leader and inspiration, we hope that through this article we have celebrated his life and career and instilled interest among a new generation of fans who may now wish to learn more about this remarkable athlete.
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