It was announced early this morning that Dick Groat has passed away at 92 years old. He was just recently elected to the Pittsburgh Pirates Hall of Fame.
Groat played a total of 14 seasons in the majors, spending his first nine seasons with the Pirates. He debuted in 1952, then spent the next two season serving in the military, before returning for the 1955 season.
Groat is best known for winning the 1960 MVP award, helping the Pirates to their third World Series title. He won the batting title that year with a .325 average.
He was an All-Star during the 1959-60 and 1962-64 seasons. He finished third in the Rookie of the Year voting, and he received MVP votes in four seasons, including a second place finish in 1963.
Groat hit .290 over his nine seasons in Pittsburgh, with 554 runs, 226 doubles, 40 triples, 30 homers and 454 RBIs in 1,258 games. He finished up his career as a .286 hitter in 1,929 games, with 829 runs, 352 doubles, 67 triples, 39 homers and 707 RBIs. He finished with a career 36.8 WAR.
You can read a longer bio for him on our history site.
The Pirates issued a press release:
John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.
When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.
RIP Mr. Groat.
RIP Mr. Groat. Much respect from a Pirate fan and Pitt grad.
Very sad. Great player, great guy.
Whoever determines election into the Pirates HOF messed up not putting Dick in last year, instead having a bunch of players that were already dead. He should’ve been in the inaugural class.
The first signed baseball card my son ever owned was a 1960 Dick Groat. He also has a Mazeroski rookie card. I bought them for him when he was 7 years old and now, at age 16, see he calls the two cards the “OG” of his collection.
RIP, Mr. Groat.