Oldest retired major leaguer Doerr dead at 99

Elias Hubbard
November 15, 2017

Doerr, who is regarded as the greatest second baseman in Boston Red Sox history, died in Junction City, Oregon, at 99. Prior to his passing on Monday, Doerr was notably the oldest living major league player. Doerr, who missed the 1945 season while serving in World War II, had his number one jersey retired in 1988 by the Red Sox. 'Even with his Hall of Fame achievements at second base, his character and personality outshined it all. He was also the last of the famous group of Red Sox players, including Williams, Dominic DiMaggio and Johnny Pesky, who, in the 1940s and 1950s, forged the identity of the storied franchise for millions of northeast fans. "He is the only member of the National Baseball Hall of Fame to live to be 99 years old". He would've turned 100 on April 7.

"Bobby's life is one we salute not only for its longevity, but for its grace", Red Sox chairman Tom Werner said in a statement.

Spending his entire 14-year big league career in Boston, the legendary middle infielder remained with the Red Sox between 1937 and 1944 and from 1946 to 1951. One of the most respected players of his time, Doerr was said to have "retired with no enemies". He returned to the Red Sox as a coach from 1967-69 and was a batting coach for the Toronto Blue Jays in 1980. After leading his American Legion team to a state championship in 1932, Doerr signed his first professional contract with the Hollywood Stars of the PCL. He was voted into the Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee in 1986. "When I got the call, it was my ultimate thrill in baseball".

Doerr is survived by his son, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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