Walt Dropo, former Red Sox first baseman, died Friday of natural causes.
Walt Dropo is not an instantly recognizable name for most Red Sox fans today. Certainly, some of the older members of the Nation, and those more dedicated to the game and club's history will remember the 27-year-old rookie who slugged 34 homers and drove in 144 runs in 1950, claiming a share of the MVP vote to go with his Rookie of the Year and All Star honors.
They may also remember Dropo fracturing his right wrist the next year, and seeing his dominant numbers disappear overnight. Dropo would be traded after just 37 games with the team in '52, finding his home run stroke one last time with Detroit before slowly fading into obscurity, playing in parts of 13 seasons, 12 of them uninspiring.
Known as "Moose", Dropo served his country in World War II before returning to baseball. His 1950 Rookie of the Year award came on the 94-60 Red Sox playing alongside greats like Ted Williams and Bobby Doerr, and but for a fractured wrist, he might be mentioned alongside those names more often today.