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Sunday School: Phillies History Lesson 97

Russ Wrightstone was a utility player with the Phillies from 1920-1928. The lifelong Pennsylvania resident made his big league debut at the ripe age of 27 with Philadelphia.

The Phillies teams of the 1920's were always near the bottom of the barrel. The club won as many as 68 games and finished within 27 games of first place only once during Wrightstone's tenure.

A player such as Wrightstone who regularly batted over .300 and could field multiple positions proved valuable to a lowly club like Philadelphia. Although he wasn't exceptional at any one position, during his time in the Majors, Wrightstone manned first base, second base, third base, shortstop, left field and right field. Managers would shift the 5-foot-10-inch 190-pounder around the diamond in an effort to keep his bat in the lineup.

Wrightstone's best offensive season came in 1925 when he played in just 92 games. That year, the lefty hitting Wrightstone posted a .346 batting average with 14 homeruns and 61 RBI.

The following year, Wrightstone had the game of his life, as he laced two doubles, a triple and a homerun while driving in 6 runs in a contest against Pittsburgh.

Early in the 1928 season, Wrightstone was dealt to the New York Giants for outfielder Art Jahn. Wrightstone would appear primarily in a pinch hitting role with the Giants in what would be his last season in the big leagues.

In 1969, Wrightstone passed away at the age of 75. He was laid to rest in Harrisburg, PA.

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Comments

SSgt Jeff Bilous said…
As the great grandson of Russ Wrightstone, it's amazing to find info like this.

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