View Full Version : Pete Reiser -- a BALLPLAYER!!

02-26-00, 02:56 AM
I posted this story in another forum a while back, but it wasn't appreciated there, so I thought I'd post it in a baseball forum..
This was taken from the January issue of Maxim. (My Pop used to talk about this guy)

After winning the National League batting title in his rookie year, Pete Reiser looked to be on the fast track to the Hall of Fame, except for one problem: This Pete played the national pastime with an abandon than makes a certain Rose look like a wallflower. Eleven times Reiser injured himself so badly he had to be carried off the field; nine times he woke up in the hospital.

In 1941, his first full season with the Dodgers, he was hit in the head by an Ike Pearson fastball and rushed, unconscious, to the hospital. He came off the bench the next day with the game tied 7-7, faced Pearson again, and hit a Grand Slam.
The following year, while trying to make a catch, he plowed into the wall and dropped the ball. He got up, threw it to the infield, and promptly passed out. (He fractured his skull)
Ordered by doctors to skip the rest of the season, Reiser came off the bench TWO days later in the 14th inning, knocked in the winning run, and as soon as he stepped on first, collapsed unconscious.
In an era when outfield walls were made of concrete, Reiser ran full speed into them nine times; seven of those times he either dislocated a shoulder or broke a collarbone. After he broke his right elbow, he learned how to throw lefty.

Writer Red Smith summarized Reiser's '46 season like this:
"Pete was knocked out making a diving catch, ripped the muscles in his left leg running out an infield hit, broke a leg sliding, broke a collarbone, dislocated his shoulder, and led the league with 34 stolen bases."

In 1947, he hit the wall so hard that a priest was brought in to administer the last rites. Reiser was paralyzed for three days.

A week later, he was back in the lineup.....

When he broke his ankle in the World Series, he asked the doctors, "Can't you just tape it up?"

Man, for the LOVE of the GAME!!!

"You slow up half a step and it's the beginning of your last game."
Pete Reiser


02-26-00, 07:33 AM
Talk about all for the love of the game...and I used to think it was amazing when I read that when Thurman played, he had broken every finger in each hand several times! Great story.


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02-26-00, 09:54 AM
What a player! Talk about playing to win, no fear at all. After reading your story about Pete Reiser I had to see what he looked like, here's what I found......

Pete Reiser

Pete Reiser & Pee Wee Reese

"Good memories are the greatest thing in the world, and I've got a lot of those. And one of the sweetest is of the kid standing out on the green grass in center field, with the winning runs on base, saying to himself, 'Hit it to me. Hit it to me!." -Pete Reiser

I'd never heard of Pete Reiser before, thanks for posting a story about a great player!


[This message has been edited by bxny (edited March 25, 2000).]

02-26-00, 10:01 AM
I remember my Dad telling me about him. He hated the Dodgers. But he loved Pete. Good stuff. Thats a guy you want on your team.


01-09-01, 04:13 PM
I thought that I'd bring this post back to the surface again since there's so many new forumers here. Hope you like it. :)

01-10-01, 08:06 AM
Thanks for the topic. Pete was one aggressive player. He really loved the game. He was hurt so many times it really hurt his career. One wonders how great could have been if he weren't hurt so many times.

Other players in the same mold, but a lower league were Cobb, O'Neill, Clint Courtney (anyone remember "old scrapiron?), Billy Martin, Pete Rose, Munson, Pinella, - these men come to mind. Any others that others remember?

01-10-01, 05:04 PM
My Dad grew up in Brooklyn, a Dodger fan of course.....The only thing I know about Pete Reiser was what he told me about him...A great ballplayer, whose career was cut short by one too many collisions with the wall while chasing fly balls.

01-10-01, 05:07 PM
This in the days of low salaries and no health insurance.