November 16 – Happy Birthday George Liddy


liddy2Former Amsterdam Recorder Sports Editor Johnny Page loved one-time Amsterdam Rugmaker center fielder George Liddy. He’d often mention the Brooklyn-born ballplayer in the first paragraph of his weekly columns, pointing out a particular strength of the outfielder’s game. “George Liddy can run like a deer.” “The way George Liddy dances around when he gets on base drives opposing pitchers nuts.”

Liddy was one of very few players who started for the Rugmakers in two different seasons. He played 89 games and batted .313 for the 1949 club and then returned in 1950 and started every game for Manager, Mayo Smith’s team and averaged .317. He was mostly a singles hitter who could steal second for you, score runs by the bushel and cover lots of ground in that spacious Mohawk Mills Park center field. The reasons he probably got stuck in C-level ball for two straight years were his lack of power and a poor performance during a 2-week trial in B-ball during that ’49 season.

Unfortunately, after his very impressive second go-round with Amsterdam in 1950, Uncle Sam called him into service and he spent the next two years in the military. When he returned to civilian life he had one more decent season in C-level ball and then decided to hang up the spikes. He returned to Brooklyn, got married and then moved south to Florida where he went to work for a radio station that he would eventually own. In addition to being a good ballplayer, Liddy played a mean game of tennis and it was his love of that game and his close relationship with tennis champion Chris Evert’s dad that gave him the idea to…

You can read the rest of my story about this former Amsterdam Rugmaker in my new book “A Year’s Worth of Amsterdam Birthdays.” To order your copy, click here.

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