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Former All-Star catcher, manager Del Crandall dies at 91

The opening day logo is displayed on American Family Field on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, in Milwaukee. The Milwaukee Brewers open their 2021 season at 1:10 p.m. Thursday against the Minnesota Twins.

MJS-brewcol01p1
The opening day logo is displayed on American Family Field on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, in Milwaukee. The Milwaukee Brewers open their 2021 season at 1:10 p.m. Thursday against the Minnesota Twins. MJS-brewcol01p1

Former All-Star catcher and major league manager Del Crandall has died. He was 91.

The Milwaukee Brewers, a team Del Crandall managed, announced the death. Crandall’s son, Jeff, said his father died Wednesday after a battle with Parkinson’s disease and heart disease.

“We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of former Milwaukee Braves catcher, Brewers manager and broadcaster Del Crandall,” the Brewers said on Twitter. “Del spent more than 15 years as a member of the Braves and Brewers franchises. Our condolences go out to his family and loved ones.”

Del Crandall played in 11 All-Star Games — he played in two apiece in 1959, 1960 and 1962 — and won four gold gloves during a 16-year playing career that ended in 1966.

Crandall was the last living member of the Boston Braves, for whom he played in 1949-50 before he missed the 1951-52 seasons to serve in the U.S. Army.

After the military stint, Crandall played the next 11 seasons for the Milwaukee Braves after the team moved from Boston and was a member of the franchise’s 1957 World Series championship team. He finished his career with one-year stints with the San Francisco Giants (1964), Pittsburgh Pirates (1965) and Cleveland Indians (1966).

All of his All-Star appearances were between 1953-62 and he hit at least 15 homers in eight straight seasons from 1953-60. Overall, Crandall batted .254 with 179 homers and 657 RBIs in 1,573 games.

“Dad was a humble man,” another son, Bill, wrote. “He was just a good man, a good example of what a man should be. He treated everybody fairly. He didn’t take his celebrity seriously at all.”

Crandall managed the Brewers for parts of four seasons from 1972-75 and compiled a 271-338 record. He managed the Seattle Mariners for parts of two campaigns (1983-84) and went 93-131 for an overall managerial record of 364-469.

Crandall is a member of the Milwaukee Braves Wall of Honor, which is located at American Family Field, home of the Milwaukee Brewers.

Crandall is the second member of the 1957 Milwaukee Braves to die this year. Legendary Hank Aaron died in January.

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–Field Level Media