|Birth: ||Oct. 17, 1927|
|Death: ||Oct. 10, 2003|
Major League Baseball Player. Originally signed by the St. Louis Cardinals before the 1944 season as an amateur free agent, Klippstein was discovered when he was 16 years old and attended a tryout in Appleton, Wisconsin, where he was offered a contract. After several seasons in the Cardinals minor league system, he was traded just before the 1949 Season to the Brooklyn Dodgers. After another season in the minors, Klippstein was drafted by the Chicago Cubs on November 17th, 1949 in the Rule V draft. With the 'Cubbies' he finally got his shot at the majors, Debuting on May 3rd, 1950. Gaining a reputation for wildness, he acquired the nickname "the wild man of Borneo." He was used as both a starter and reliever during the early years of his career. After 5 so-so seasons, he was traded over to Cincinnati on October 1st, 1954, along with Jim Willis for Ted Tappe, Harry Perkowski, and Jim Bolger. His stay with the Redlegs produced his first wining season of pitching, as he went 12-11 in 1956. On June 15, 1958, he was traded along with Steve Bilko and 2 Players to be named later, (Art Fowler and Charlie Rabe), to the Los Angeles Dodgers for Don Newcombe. Dodger skipper Walter Alston used him almost exclusively as a reliever. He appeared in the 1959 World Series for Los Angeles, appearing in 1 game. A durable pitcher, he was always a welcome addition to any bullpen corp, always pitching effectively. Purchased by the Indians on April 11th, 1960 he had a league-leading 14 saves in his only season with the 'Tribe.' After stops with the Senators, the Reds again, and the Phillies, he was purchased by the Minnesota Twins on June 29th, 1964. It was in 1965 that he had one of his best seasons ever. Taking over the Number 2 role behind Minnesota bullpen ace Al Worthington, Klippstein went 9-3 with five saves, helping the Twins to their first pennant. Klippstein pitched 2.7 innings in that years Fall Classic going 0-0 with a 0.00 era in 2.7 innings. He finished his career with a 5 game stint with the Tigers in 1967. One of the most-like ballplayers of his time, Johnny lived in Chicago for nearly 50 years and was a season ticket holder for Cubs games. Diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1993, he battled the disease with determination and good cheer, never giving up. The disease actually went into remission for a time, but returned in 2003. He was a week away from celebrating his 52nd wedding anniversary when he passed away on October 10th, 2003, while he was listening to the Cubs beat the Florida Marlines 5-4 in 11 innings in the NLCS. He was also the son-in-law of former Major League Pitcher Emil "Dutch" Leonard. Over the course of his 18 year career, Johnny Klippstein accrued a 101-118 won-loss record with 66 saves in 711 league games, pitching 1967.2 innings and striking out 1158 batters, posting a very respectable 4.24 era. (bio by: Frank Russo)
Saint Marys Cemetery
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Record added: Oct 14, 2003
Find A Grave Memorial# 7983702
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On this date 58 years ago -- July 2, 1956 -- Johnny Klippstein got Cincinnati's 21-game homestand underway by outdueling Milwaukee Braves ace Warren Spahn 2-1 before 28,635 fans at Crosley Field.|
Added: Jul. 2, 2014
Added: Oct. 10, 2013
Richard Seibert M.D.
Added: Dec. 6, 2012
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