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Ex-major leaguer Pafko dies at 92

The SportsXchange

Four-time All-Star Andy Pafko, who played with Hall of Famers Jackie Robinson and Hank Aaron and was part of several memorable moments in baseball history, died on Tuesday at age 92.

Pafko died of natural causes at a nursing home in Stevensville, Mich., the Associated Press first reported Wednesday.

The Wisconsin native started his baseball career with the Chicago Cubs in 1943 and cracked the starting lineup the next year at age 19. In 1945, he played on the franchise's last World Series team, batting .298 with 110 RBIs during the regular season.

His best years came in 1948 and 1950 when he hit .312 with 26 home runs and 101 RBIs and .304 with 36 home runs and 92 RBIs, respectively.

In 1950, Pafko was traded to the Brooklyn Dodgers. He was playing left field for the Dodgers in 1951 when Bobby Thomson hit the famous three-run homer in the Polo Grounds that gave the New York Giants the National League pennant. He watched the ball sail over his head.

"That was the biggest disappointment in my whole career," Pafko said in a 1999 interview. "I wanted to go to the World Series."

Pafko played in the World Series the next year against the New York Yankees before he was traded to the Braves in 1953. He made it to two more World Series with Aaron and the Braves in 1957 and 1958 before he retired as a player after 17 seasons in 1959.

He went on to work as a coach and manager in the Braves' organization and as a scout for the Montreal Expos before leaving baseball and eventually retiring in the 1970s.

"Except for the money today, I have no regrets," Pafko said.
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