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 Harold Franklin “Hal” Epps

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Harold Franklin “Hal” Epps

Birth
Athens, Clarke County, Georgia, USA
Death 25 Aug 2004 (aged 90)
Houston, Harris County, Texas, USA
Burial Houston, Harris County, Texas, USA
Plot Section N3 Site 2072
Memorial ID 9402183 View Source
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Baseball player. Hal Epps was born in Athens, Georgia, on March 26, 1914. A lover of sports in his youth, he played both football and baseball and entered the University of Georgia on a football scholarship in 1934. One year later, however, he was convinced by a scout for the St Louis Cardinals to switch over to baseball, where he would remain for the next eighteen years. Signed to the Cardinals training camp, he was honed his skills in numerous farm systems where he would attain a batting average of over .300. Despite this promising ability, it wouldn't be until 1938 when he was finally called up to the St Louis Cardinals professional roster as an outfielder. He made his first major league appearance on September 9, 1938 against the Chicago Cubs. Although he only made ten appearances as an outfielder during the season, his batting talents placed him at the forefront of pinch hitters, again reaching a .300 average. He was sent back to the minors at the close of the season, not playing with the Cardinals again until 1940. After eleven games he returned to the minors, playing for the minor league Houston Buffs until 1943, never getting his call back to the Cardinals. In 1943 he signed with the Toledo Mud Hens, the affiliate for the St Louis Browns . Still hitting a respectable .300 to .301, he began shining in his role as outfielder as well, earning his nickname "The Reindeer" for the way he sprinted and dove to make catches. His improvement earned him a spot on the Browns where he would stay only until June when he was picked up by the Philadelphia Athletics. Shortly after, he was called up by the Army to serve in the South Pacific during World War II. After he left the service in 1947, he joined back up with the Houston Buffs in the Texas League, helping his team win the Dixie Series. Realizing that the call back to the majors would never come again, yet loving the game, he played for the Buffs until 1952 before he leaving to work for Armco Steel as a security guard for the next twenty-five years. Harold Epps would remain a local minor league legend, however, receiving daily fan mail until his death at the age of ninety.

Bio by: Lysa


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