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#21 [url]

Jul 20 12 9:46 AM

To the guest that finds recent posts boring and repetitive: Not only to mention, that the “boring and repetitive posts” keeping the forum alive, but I would suggest instead of complaining about the party, come on aboard and join in. I am sure there are things and memories that you would like to share with the rest of us.

John Fleming Florida's favorite uncle Uncle Johnny

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#22 [url]

Jul 24 12 5:29 PM

Kevin McKernan,
                           I thought that you were the reserved lad in The McKernan Clan but after I read that you jumped from the cliffs of Paoli Quarry-I changed my  thinking. Your siblings are quite interesting and my brother,Cactus Jack,and his buddies marched to a different drum-they were not reserved and would not be allowed on the reservation. Reading your post about Paoli Quarry and how you jumped from the cliffs with your hardened jewels,brought back my memory of a day at The Quarry.  Jack's friend,Tough Tommy Taylor, barges into our house on a hot summer day,and says,"Let's Go The Fudging Quarry for  a Fudging Swim. Tough Tommy was a brawler who eventually did some work for a powerful union. On the way,to the Paoli Quarry,we stopped at a bar in Manayunk where Harold Johnson[Boxer] would stop for a taste and it was not a Yuppie Bar like the bars in Manayunk are today. I am the youngest dude at the bar,having recently graduated from The Prep. The bartender is only grabbing money from The Schmitt Brothers because TTT must have been short of some loose-change. I make a statement to my brother in a sarcastic tone,"It's summer and I'm not Santa Claus". Tommy T. retorts,"Are You Dissing Me". I respond,"If you're Irish,Throw Some Green On The Mahogany". I was 5 years younger than Tough Tommy and my brother intervened. I did not say much on the way to Paoli Quarry[Malvern] and I had  some of the beverage to quench my thirst. Tommy T. had some nice shoes and took them off and jumped into the quarry. I don't want to be sadistic but I was hoping that he was going to do a McKernan and jump off the cliffs  so he would cool off since he had a scowl on his face. After swimning, he finds out that some rascal had either hidden or stolen his shoes. A big guy by the name of Michael who knew Goony Walsh and his friend's name was Trigger,is walking past him. Tommy barks out,"Nails! Do You Know Where My Fudging Shoes Are?". Nails was one big dude and later,was famous for his Union-activity,especially at  The Altemose-construction site,back in the day.The big guy's name was Michael and he was very tough and he went by the nickname,Nails. This incident was 50+ years ago,and I was hoping for a hook-out and I knew Nails did not hide his shoes. Nails was not afraid of Tough Tommy and growled,"Do I Look  Like A Hucking Shoemaker?". I knew a few of the very tough dudes who were at The Quarry in the summer of 1959 and they did not jump from the cliffs, The Lord must have endowed you with brass jewels or a courageous heart and I am surprised that you did not join "The Navy Seals". In our callow youth, we can get A Rush from various experiences but that was quite a story about Paoli Quarry and I only wish Tampa John Fleming had taken a picture. Brother Kevin! Keep posting and I hope Brother Bernie read your post about your jump from The Paoli Quarry in your callow youth.        JB  Schmitt

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#23 [url]

Jul 24 12 8:37 PM

JBS,  That's a great yarn you wrote on "our" Quarry.  You ran with a tough crowd, lad,  almost Good Fellows with a Christian education and vanishing morals.   My friends were just crazy,  like characters out of the "Deer Hunter"-- go anywhere, do anything types--the young and crazy Buddy Hansberry and a few fellows out of Holy Rosary that still counted on their fingers.  Hanging out with them made me feel smart but do stupid things, like slumming around with Bill Gates would make you feel wealthy.  It was all about "coming -of-age" as a young man in Germantown and testing yourself.   My main mentor, brother Bernie, provided a poor example by using an umbrella for a parachute... Wisdom came later, probably when I realized I was more of a scholar than a warrior.   Before this I took a lot of "Leaps of Faith"--made Pascal type wagers, not on the existence of God, but on beating the odds on a lot of dubious secular bets/dares.  In other words, I just did "it," as long as the odds were in my favor, before Nike copyrighted that phrase.  Brother Bernie will be reading this so I must be circumspect.  He is well and smart enough to realize that he is not tempermentally suited for this site.  The brother is not reserved!  He's using his spare time to talk Germantownese  to the miscreants in Baltimore.  He enjoys it and is really quite colorful at it --a quip master.  When he's not plying the waters on the  mighty Chesapeake in "Aquila," he's dealing with health issues and really, really enjoying life.  He's become something of an epicurean, as much as his health and budget  will permit.  This is a significant improvement over the junk we ate in Philly.  When he's feeling flush, he'll send me a case of Tastykakes and I'll reciprocate with chips and salsa--good and hot!  We both love Mex.    BTW, is terribly, tough Tommy still with us? Truth be told, you probably put his shoes in the poison ivy plant, didn't you? I would have...back then.

Kevin Mc Kernan

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#24 [url]

Jul 24 12 9:43 PM

Kevin McKernan,
                             My older brother,Cactus Jack, had many friends who walked on the wild side. I did not have good rapport with them but they were always over my house which was a bit of a problem and they used our clubhouse in the basement and drank our beverages. The irony of life is one of his friends,Charlie, was a nice guy when he was sober but Hell on Wheels with some whiskey and he died playing Russian Roulette. I did not like Tough Tommy from The Quarry and his younger brother,was one of the smartest kids at Roman and TT was a bad role-model for him. I was not the sharpest arrow in the quiver but I learned early on who to avoid bad people. I always liked talking to smart guys whether in playgrounds,bars,or educational Institutions. At a certain age, one has to get it or they are doomed for failure. There was a guy from Germantown by the name of Biff Halloran,from a privliged family,and he was connected with some people with a sketchy background,and he just disappeared. His brother,Harry,got it and had a great career and is a philanthropist-he even gave millions to Temple. I am happy to see that you and your brothers got it and have productive lives. I knew many guys who were highly intelligent but got messed up in the 60's and never recovered. I do recall a name that you mentioned by the name of Hansberry and I remembered that name from GBC. At GBC,Mickey Hansberry was an outstanding basketball player and super pitcher. Back in the day, I knew 2 great hitters in baseball,Paul Borian and Bill Haas. Bill Haas had  a free-ride to GA and Bor turned down Penn Charter but took a scholarship to Nova. They both had big league talent but Bill Haas should have traveled down the educational highway-but he had no mentor. I did not have good rapport with Bill but I wish that he used his great talent for better opportunities. I do think that you,Bor,and I figured it out although we made a few mistakes in our callow youth and benefitted from the experiences. Walking around the big Germantown Block, we could meet some very tough characters,but I always tried to treat them with dignity and respect when possible. I just received an E-mail from Dave Byrne who graduated from North in 1962 and was in Brother Ken's  SFA Class. One afternoon,I was hanging out with Dave in an Irish Joint in Ambler and he knew one of the most feared men in America-Frank Sheeran. I learned valuable lessons from Germantown-be friends with good people and stay away from the bad and ugly and cut your losses. I am glad that you knew the risk when you made that jump from The Paoli Quarry Cliffs.            J. Bruce Schmitt

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#25 [url]

Jul 29 12 6:37 PM

All my friends in old Germantown knew the routine: catch the same bus(s) to CD, five days a week, for four years.  Only the weather and daily seat mate changed.  Boring!  Then one day, on the return leg home riding the "J" bus,  during my Junior year, serendipity struck.  The bus was quite full of rowdy Irish and Italian mates going home to Cowtown and other points in Germantown and had stopped to pick up some Olney High students.  The first girl on was a beautiful, Jewish Princess.  I quickly "encouraged"  my shy and reserved friend to give her his seat.  A small pat on the seat had this beauty sitting next to me.  At Olney High they didn't have any of those de-feminizing rules about wearing make-up, jewelry and Channel #5, 1961.  "Hi!" said myself, with a big toothy grin. " Do you live around here?" She told me she lived in the "Logan" section (J. Fleming, you missed this one).  She asked where I went to school.  Now the bus was full of CD delinquents, so I crossed by fingers and told her the truth: "I go to Germantown High" to the hoots of my so-called friends behind me...she turns around to look me in the eyes with those two, wet, dilated, black pupils and took my breath away with: "Oh, you poor devil."  I could have slapped her, and had I know Germantown's most famous alum. Paul Borian back then, I would have told her that Olney sports teams sucked!.  And then, quick as she appeared, she was getting off the bus.  Still stunned, all I could yell out was a feeble "Damn girl, you could have walked those few blocks." Sometimes you win and sometimes you don't.  JBS, I suppose you and other jesuit educated folks will be honoring "Your General"--St Ignatius of Loyola,  this coming Tuesday.  And, well you should; he was the man.  Lovely words you, Helen, brother Bernie and others submitted on the passing of a great Germantowner--Carole Murray, a St Vincent graduate. RIP.
Kevin McKernan

Kevin Mc Kernan

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#26 [url]

Jul 29 12 10:39 PM

Kevin McKernan,

My daily trips to and from CD, weren't always boring, as they were somewhat changing from year to year. Initially, we took the “O” bus. It was usually non stop as it was always filled with CD students. Somewhere along the line, PTC, as it was known then did away with the trip. We then took the subway to Fern Rock, then transferred to the XO. The one big benefit of coming home, was seeing all the girls from Girls High get on at Olney. To this day, I still remember one exceptionally attractive girl. Since I was still in my awkward stage around females, I could do nothing but fantasize. Just to mix up from time to time, and since I was and still am a rail fan, I would take the 47 home. All this greatly changed junior year, when the family picked up stakes and moved to New Jersey. Now going to school was an adventure. Getting there in the morning wasn't that bad. My sister worked on Cottman Avenue, so I was able to catch the “Y” bus. Coming home was a different story. I had to get to center city, usually by the Reading Line train, then catch the Jersey bus home. Senior year eased up greatly, as I was able to drive to school, in less then 30 minutes. I believe I was the first student to graduate from CD, while living in New Jersey.

Funny you should mention the Jewish girls from Olney. If you remember there was a fleet of K buses parked in front of the school at dismissals. After they departed CD, their next stop was Olney. Since the hierarchy decided it was in our best interest to separate the boys from the girls as much as possible, it was not not unusual for many good Catholic boys to be dating Jewish girls that they met on the “K” bus.

John Fleming Florida's favorite uncle Uncle Johnny

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#27 [url]

Jul 30 12 4:31 AM

Bernie McKernan,
                             The McKernan Brothers are gifted writers and you are a very glib lad but I have to tell that your blog and essay on Carole Redding Murray from St Vicent's was one of the finest that I have read on This Germantown Web-site- I connected viscerally with your compassion and love for your deceased classmate -.Carole. Both of you battled that horrific disease and The Lord decided it was Carol's time to come home. I knew Carole through Jim Murray,my classmate from The Prep. Jim is an outstanding Prep Teacher and legendary Prep AD. Carole,and my wife,Ludmila, talked at The Prep's 50th Reunion for The 1959 Class and now they have both departed. Carole and Jim were both very bright and dedicated and devoted teachers. The Murray Children went to The Prep and are doing well in life. I and The Preppers thank you for your heartfelt comments about Carole-"May Carole Redding Rest In Eternal Peace". I will be attending the viewing at Villanova-this evening.                 J. Bruce Schmitt

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#28 [url]

Jul 30 12 7:33 AM

John Bruce, The words were written by my heart with the help of my soul. I don't know Jim Murray ersonally but with a strong forty eight year marriage that produced a number of children, six I believe, you could tell they were happy & Carole's sentiments towards her family & husband reflected those feelings. Thank you for the kind words regarding the McKernan Brothers but the real hero's in helping form our lives were my parents , the wonderful St.Joseph Nuns, the Oblates & the Jesuit priests who only ever taught & never criticized me for free speeh & expression of same be it speaking or the written word....... ...Speaking of Jesuits, our church here in Baltimore, the oldest Jesuit church in the city dating back to 1856 will be celebrating it's founders feast day come Tuesday I believe. Fr. William Watters the pastor who is celebrating his sixtieth year in the Society of Jesus & who also was once the President @ the Prep back in your day among many other positions on his resume including many years in India doing missionary work. I had the pleasure & honor of being @ mass yesterday & as always Fr.Watters gave a stirring homily. Outside of Jesus himself, I think Father Watters is a very holy man. I remembered my friend Carole at mass along with the dearly departed. Sincerely Bernie McKernan

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#29 [url]

Jul 30 12 7:39 AM

You are right about the so-so acomplishments of the Olney High School athletic teams.However,one of my buddies,Lee Elia,was perhaps the greatest athlete in the school's history.He was all public in baseball,basketball and football.He graduated in 1955 and went to Delaware on a combined baseball/football scholarship.He left Delaware after his sophmore year,signing a $25,000 bonus contract with the Phillies.That was a lot of money back then.Lee spent fifty years in professional baseball as a player,manager and coach,many of those years in the major leagues.Last I heard,he was a coach for Seattle,a few years ago.
Paul Borian

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#30 [url]

Jul 31 12 10:48 AM

The Saint Vincent's  Family,
                                           On Monday-evening, I attended Carole Murray's Viewing at The Villanova Chapel on Lancaster Avenue. The line was long and Jim Nolen and I waited patiently before we consoled our Prep Classmate,Jim Murray. Jim Nolen's Family owned Nolen's Fuel&Coal Co. at Penn&Belfield in Germantown not far from Carole Redding's home In Germantown. Jim Nolen's Grand-father was Connie Mack[A's] who lived on Lincoln Drive. Jim Nolen's cousin is Connie Mack Jr. who was the former Senator of Florida. There were many sports-figures at The Viewing but I was most pleased to talk with A Happy Hollower and Prep Philanthropist-Lou Pauzano Sr. Lou is very loyal to Germantowners and Preppers- a great man from Germantown who could talk with people from Germantown and South Philly if you know what I mean.      J. Bruce Schmitt

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#31 [url]

Aug 7 12 6:30 AM

Kevin: Remember you from Church Lane.Remember your brother Bernie,and Micky Hansberry,who also lived with his brothers Johnny and Buddy on Church Lane for a while/Joe(Buddy) Penderghest.

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#32 [url]

Aug 7 12 8:57 AM

Joe,  Did you have a sister? Did you live at Seminole hall?  I believe i met your sis  with Rosemarie Malageri when my son Ross was playing semi pro football in Philly about 10 years ago. The NC farm lads destroyed the Philly "Celtics" as i recall.  Did you join the Vincentians? I seem to recall a bright lad who became a priest from St Vincent De Paul parish?

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#33 [url]

Aug 7 12 11:55 AM

Hello, Joseph Penderghest! More than fifty years have not dulled my remaining brain cells in remembering you, your twin brother and sister. Do you still have all that red hair? You were the more worldly brother as opposed to Vincent (?) who went into the seminary after 8th grade--way too soon, as I recall. I had the pleasure of watching you develop into a fine young man (not too much of a wise-guy) at CD. You were a fine neighbor and our Mothers worked together, I believe, at the Shrine. Mom kept me abreast of the Penderghests' adventures for years after my time in Germantown came to an end (1962). I'm so glad to see another East Germantowner find his way onto this site. I was beginning to think others were still in jail or had not migrated onto computers. Welcome home, Joe. Drop us a memory now and then. Kevin

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#34 [url]

Aug 7 12 11:03 PM

Paul Borian,
I admire your devotion to your buddy Lee Elia, who lived on 11th street in Logan, but might give you a debate as to him being the greatest athlete in the history of Olney. I am sure that you have heard of another Olney grad, by the name of Del Ennis, who for many years, held most of the Phillies slugging records, until Mike Schmidt came along.

1955 Bowman Del Ennis #17 Baseball Card

John Fleming Florida's favorite uncle Uncle Johnny

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#35 [url]

Aug 8 12 6:29 AM

John Fleming,
For a good part of his great career with the Phils,Ding Don Del was under-appreciated.He was a great baseball player from Olney,but not sure if he played other sports like Lee Elia.
The whiz kids of 1950 were a talented bunch of baseball players.Today's Phillies would look pretty good with Del Ennis in left field,Whitey Asburn in center field,and Robin Roberts on the mound.Also,how about Jim Konstanty in the bullpen ?
Paul Borian

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#36 [url]

Aug 8 12 7:16 AM

Delmer Ennis (June 8, 1925 – February 8, 1996) was an American left and right fielder in Major League Baseball who played most of his career for the Philadelphia Phillies. From 1949 to 1957, Ennis accumulated more runs batted in than anyone besides Stan Musial and was 8th in the National League in home runs.[1] In 1950 he led the National League with 126 RBI as the Phillies won their first pennant in 35 years. He held the Phillies career record of 259 home runs from 1956 to 1980, and ranked 10th in NL history with 1824 games in the outfield when his career ended.[citation needed]


Ennis was born to George and Agnes Ennis in the Crescentville section[citation needed] of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He played baseball and football at Olney High School and was mentioned as an All-State fullback. Philadelphia Phillies scout Jocko Collins came to watch one of Ennis's high school classmates pitch. When Ennis hit two long home runs, Collins tried to recruit him but Ennis was hesitant, worried that he was not ready, and unsure that he wanted to pursue a baseball career. In August 1942, Ennis finally signed with Collins to play with the Phillies' Canadian-American League team, but the league suspended operation for World War II. Ennis signed with Collins again in March 1943 and hit .348 with 19 home runs and 16 triples for the Phillies' Trenton, New Jersey Interstate League team. In September 1943, Philadelphia wanted to call Ennis to the major leagues, but he went into the United States Navy instead. Ennis saw military action in the Pacific Theater and also toured with a baseball team that included Billy Herman, Johnny Vander Meer and Schoolboy Rowe.[2] He joined the USN on September 29, 1943 and was assigned to Sampson Naval Training Station, New York where he graduated as a signalman from "A" school at Sampson and then posted to the Hawaiian Sea Frontier. When the Navy learned that Ennis was associated with the Philadelphia Phillies,they assumed he was a major leaguer and invited him to fill one of the vacancies while in Honolulu. He was included on the Navy's Western PAC Tour of many Pacific Islands in 1944–1945. Ennis looked very good at the plate in the few exhibition games which immediately preceded the tours. His slugging prompted Dan Topping, new owner of the New York Yankees and a fellow serviceman at Pearl to offer him $25,000 to sign with the Yanks. The Phillies had only paid Del $50 to sign. His naval rank was Petty Officer Third Class. Most of his service was on the island of Guam after the winter tour. Playing with and against major leaguers on the tours was equivalent of a minor league apprenticeship for Ennis. After the tours he was assigned to a fleet recreation billet at Gab Gab Beach on Guam and stayed on the island for one year and did not make it back to the states as soon as some of the others because he did not have enough points built up. He finally returned stateside through San Diego on the USS Wakefield. Ennis was discharged from the Navy on April 5, 1946 and joined the major league Phillies about a week later. Player-manager Ben Chapman delayed Ennis's debut since he had missed spring training, and then had him pinch-hit on April 28 against the Boston Braves - a groundout to shortstop.[2][3] Chapman gave Ennis the starting job in left field, a weak spot in the Phillies' lineup. On May 5, Ennis hit his first home run - a three-run shot in the 1st inning - and then his second, both in the second game of a doubleheader. His favorite moment was on his birthday, June 8, when his single broke up a perfect game with only four outs remaining. That month, Olney residents held a Del Ennis Night at Shibe Park with 36,356 in attendance and an estimated 20,000 turned away. Del singled with the bases loaded to drive in two runs in the first inning against the Cardinals and the Phils won. His average raised over .300 until a slump in July.[2]
In his early career, Ennis was noted not only for his home runs and hard line drives, but also good outfield play and fast, hard baserunning.[2] Eleven weeks after his debut, Ennis became the first Phillies rookie ever to make an All-Star team on the strength of a powerful throwing arm and his booming bat. He also became the first ever Sporting News Rookie Award winner, and finished eighth in the MVP voting after batting .313 with 17 home runs and 73 RBI and placing second in the NL in slugging average (.485) behind Musial. Here are some facts that illustrate how good Ennis was as a ballplayer in his time. He was among the TOP TEN in these categories: BATTING AVERAGE (three times), HOME RUNS (eight times), RBI’s (ten times), MVP VOTING (eight times), TOTAL BASES (six times). In the decade from 1947 to 1957, only Stan Musial and Duke Snider had better overall production. Snider compiled a total of 1,031 RBI from 1950 to 1959 and Ennis knocked in 1,025 in the decade of the 50's.
Ennis' 1951 Bowman Gum baseball card.
Ennis showed his power in 1948, driving in 95 runs with 30 home runs – a Phillies record for right-handed hitters, breaking Gavvy Cravath's 1915 total of 24. A year later, he hit .302 with 25 homers and 110 RBI, and he finished second in the NL in doubles both seasons. But his most productive season came in 1950, when he hit .311 with career highs of 31 home runs and an NL-best 126 RBI; the 31 HRs were the team record for right-handed hitters until teammate Stan Lopata hit 32 in 1956. As a member of the 1950 team dubbed the "Whiz Kids," Del was the scourge of the National League and he helped the Phillies to win their first pennant since 1915 in an exciting finish that saw Philadelphia beat out the powerful Brooklyn Dodgers on the last day of the season, only to be swept in the World Series by the New York Yankees, with Ennis hitting only .143 with no RBI. Ennis placed fourth in the MVP voting, won by teammate Jim Konstanty.
From 1952 to 1955, Ennis collected four 20+ HR, 100+ RBI seasons, with highs of 29 and 125 in 1953. He was also named to three All-Star Games, in 1946, 1951 and 1955. In 1956 he passed Chuck Klein to become the Phillies' all-time home run leader, and he held the record until Mike Schmidt passed him in 1980. In 1956, he also broke Ed Delahanty's record of 1,544 games with the Phillies; Richie Ashburn broke his record in 1958. By the end of the 1956 season he was also among the NL's top ten career home run leaders, though he dropped out of the top ten before his career ended. Traded to the St. Louis Cardinals before the 1957 season for Rip Repulski, Ennis responded with a .286 average, 26 home runs and 105 RBI, finishing second in the NL behind his teammate Musial. But his production dropped off sharply in 1958, and after two years in St. Louis he finished his career in 1959 playing for the Cincinnati Redlegs and the pennant winning Chicago White Sox. In a 14-season career, Ennis compiled a .284 batting average with 288 home runs, 2,063 hits, 1,284 RBI and 985 runs in 1,903 games.
Ennis was inducted into the Philadelphia Baseball Wall of Fame.
The story of Del and the abuse he endured from Philadelphia fans in eleven seasons has obscured his impressive statistics and also his memory. The taciturn Ennis, not given to introspection, shrugged off the abuse. Eventually, he won his "war with the wolves" in old Shibe Park and Connie Mack Stadium. As an example, in the second game of a doubleheader against the Cardinals on July 31, 1954, in the top of the third inning, Ennis dropped an outfield fly with the bases loaded and all three runners scored. In the bottom half of the same inning with two on and two out, he hit the first pitch on the roof in left field, and the Phillies won the game by a score of 6–5.[4] Ennis' career ended with a mid-season release by the Chicago White Sox in 1959, after having been acquired from Cincinnati during the first week of the 1959 season. In the first eleven games that he played with the Sox, Del drove in seven runs including a game winner in mid-May in Yankee Stadium. In fact, Ennis had four game-winning hits in six games in early '59 and the Sox went on to win the AL pennant that year. However, Del was not with the team that played the Dodgers in the 1959 World Series although he was voted a one-fourth WS share after the World Series. To make room on the roster for Norm Cash, who had completed his service commitment, Ennis was waived by the White Sox in mid-June 1959, thus ending a highly productive career spanning fourteen seasons. Larry Doby who also played on the White Sox team in 1959, Ralph Kiner, and Enos Slaughter are all in the Baseball Hall of Fame and belong there. Ennis' career stats are the equal of these players yet his votes for entry are paltry. This player's career needs to be reviewed by the Veterans Committee for the future as he is all but dismissed by writers who never saw him in uniform in his time. When Del came to bat in old Connie Mack or Shibe Park, the fans knew that a game could be altered quickly because of his ability to drive in runners on base. The expectation was always there and pitchers in the 1950s knew he was a dangerous hitter as did the Philadelphia fans despite the booing that Del received. He began the final season of his career with the Reds, batting .333 in 12 AB, but with no HR. On May 1, he was traded to the White Sox, where he was the starting left fielder throughout May into early June. His defensive replacement in that period was one Johnny Callison.[For Phillies fans, this is a passing-the-torch moment, if ever there was one.]
With Chicago, Ennis batted .219, 2 HR, 7 RBI in 96 AB. The White Sox released Ennis on June 20. They called-up Jim McAnany to play RF and moved Al Smith from RF to LF for the balance of the season. Ennis was No. 15 in batting for the pennant winning White Sox in the 1959 season despite his early release and retirement.
Following his retirement as a player, Ennis operated a bowling alley named Del Ennis Lanes in Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania, with the former traveling secretary of the Phillies, John Wise. He also bred greyhound race dogs. Ennis also spent a year coaching baseball at the Penn State University Abington Campus (formerly Ogontz campus). He remembered his 1950 Phillies days in his sports enterprise, calling three dogs scheduled to run in Florida racetracks Whiz Kids Ennis, Whiz Kids Ashburn and Whiz Kids Roberts. In 1983, during the Phillies' 100th anniversary year, he was named to the Philadelphia Phillies Centennial Team. There is a plaque on the Phillies Wall of Fame at the team's new ballpark honoring the career of Del Ennis as a Whiz Kid.

Recollections from Del Ennis

"I really didn't expect to stay with the Phillies but they had to give me a 30 day trial because I was on the National Defense List. I never had spring training [ in 1946] and I pinch hit in Pittsburgh in my first game, then I got into the starting lineup. In my second game in left field, I hit a bases loaded double to beat the Pirates. A few days later in Chicago against the Cubs, I hit two homers in one game"
Ennis used to treat his bats with great care "I used to hang out at a gas station called the Gas House. I used to take home a dozen bats at the end of each year. I would fill up one of those big drums with linseed oil and leave the bats in the drum all winter. They would get to be about 40–42 ounces and when I got to Florida for spring training, I put the bats in the dryer where they dried uniforms. That would get them down to about 36 ounces, and make them harder. Andy Seminick and I used the same bat all year in 1950 when we won the NL pennant."
Ennis died in Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania, at 70 years of age from complications of diabetes. He was buried in Hillside Cemetery, Roslyn, Pennsylvania.


Del Ennis hits a leadoff solo HR on September 1952 in the bottom of the 17th inning as the Phils beat Boston by a score of 7–6 in the first game of a doubleheader at Shibe Park.
Ennis drives in six runs in a game with the Reds at Crosley Field on July 30, 1953.
Opening day in 1956 in Pittsburgh and the game is washed out by rain as Del has 5 RBIs to no avail. He finishes the season of 1956 with 95, the first year in five he misses the 100 RBI mark.
He had a three HR game on July 23, 1955 at Connie Mack Stadium and drove in all 7 runs -one short of George Kelly's NL mark set in 1924- the Phils beating the Cards 7–2 as Robin Roberts wins his 16th season victory and 6th in a row. Three times in his career Del Ennis broke up a no-hit game, including one off Ramón Monzant of the New York Giants on April 29, 1956. In 1946, his two out 8th inning single spoils a no hit perfect game bid by Red Barrett of the Cardinals and in 1947 he broke up a no hit bid by Hal Gregg of the Dodgers.

1950 highlights

  • Ennis' salary for 1950 was $30,000, at the time the highest ever paid to a member of the Phillies. Del hit home runs in four consecutive games twice in the 1950 season. In 11 seasons as a Phillies outfielder in the post World War II years, Del Ennis averaged better than 23 home runs and 100 runs batted in and was the key player on the 1950 pennant winning team.
  • July 27 - Ennis hit a double and a grand slam with seven RBI against the Chicago Cubs, as the Phillies won 13–3 at Shibe Park. Philadelphia won 11 of their next 15 games to hold first place by four games over the Boston Braves.
  • July 30 - In the first game of a doubleheader, he hit his second grand slam in three days in a 10–0 win over Pittsburgh Pirates. He added a two-run homer as the Phillies won the second game, 4–2. His seven RBI in two games gave him 41 for the month, a new Phillies mark.
  • August 16 - The Phillies beat the second-place Braves 5–1 on Robin Roberts' three-hitter, scoring four runs in the fourth inning off Vern Bickford including Ennis' 26th home run of the season.
  • August 21 - The Phillies beat the New York Giants as Ennis had three hits and drove in his 100th run of the season to bolster Curt Simmons' four-hit shutout for his 16th win of the season. Philadelphia heads west with a 5½ game lead in the NL pennant race.
  • September 15 - In a doubleheader against Cincinnati, Ennis went 5-for-10, including a three-RBI double in the 18th inning of game two, as the Phillies won both games.
  • September 24 - As the Phillies near the end of a pennant season, Ennis powered the faltering "Whiz Kids" past the Boston Braves with a home run, three singles, and four RBI in an 8–7 win.

John Fleming Florida's favorite uncle Uncle Johnny

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#38 [url]

Aug 8 12 4:06 PM

Impressive statistics for one of the greatest Philly players of all time,and a local guy to boot.Hard to believe the boo's that he received from Phillies fans.Today,if he were playing,the fans would go ga-ga over his outstanding performances on the playing field.
Paul Borian

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#39 [url]

Aug 8 12 5:34 PM

Paul Borian,Hollow Slugger-
                                               Bor! It is interesting how your conversation with John Fleming is about baseball and I discuss with him-art,sculpture,and one tough teamster. Baggs, John P.[Jr.] and I were not good hitters like you and Bill Haas but we know and enjoy the game. I remember when Dick Sisler hit the home-run to win The National League Championship in 1950 and Richie Ashburn had gunned down a runner at the plate. I lived across from The Germantown Cricket Club and some of The Phillies rented a Victorian Mansion on the grounds. People would go to Crane's before a Phillies game. It is getting difficult to root for The Phillies and Del Ennis would be a hero as you suggested. You can still play poker and I'll look at some sculpture in center-city since I am a reserved season citizen. I visited your alma-mater at  a viewing at The Villanova Chapel-Carole Redding Murray-I find it scary that so many wives are heading to heaven faster than their husbands. Thank God that Brother Ken dodged a bullet and is hanging up his cue-stick and wants to be a reserved Prepper. Bor! Try to enjoy the shore but it is even hot down there and is it possible that Al Gore got it right-Global Warming.  My prayers are with you,The Happy Hollowers,and Billy Kelly.                Schmitty

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#40 [url]

Aug 8 12 8:29 PM

Where does one begin, when discussing the Phillies of the 50's and how underrated and under appreciated they were? I think it can be simply stated as being a result of the combination of Philadelphia being in the shadow of the New York press, and the inability of the Phillies ownership to spend money to produce winning teams. Unfortunately for Whitey and Ennis, they had to compete with Mays, Mantle and Snider for recognition. Sure Mays and Mantle, are on everyone's top 5 list of all time players, but Ennis and Whitey posted great stats over their careers. Lets not forget the great records Roberts posted with the losing Phils of the 50's!

John Fleming Florida's favorite uncle Uncle Johnny

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