Longtime Tigers pitcher Trucks dies at 95
Right-hander played 17 MLB seasons, threw two no-hitters in 1952
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Virgil Trucks, the only Tigers pitcher other than Justin Verlander to throw two no-hitters, died on Saturday evening at his home in Calera, Ala.
Trucks was 95.
The right-hander enjoyed a 17-year career in the big leagues, playing for four teams, though his daughter Carolyn told the Detroit News that "he used to say he played with the Detroit Tigers and four other teams."
According to a News report on Sunday, Trucks was admitted to the hospital on Thursday morning with what the doctors said was pneumonia. He had five children, several grand- and great-grandchildren and is survived by his fourth wife, Elizabeth Ann.
"What a fine gentleman," Tigers president/general manager Dave Dombrowski said on Monday. "I really, really enjoyed his company. I've had the chance to talk to him on the phone, throughout the time period. He did come up to Detroit one time. And he recently did call me, within the last month when we were in Spring Training."
Trucks was famous for throwing two no-hitters in 1952, a year in which the Tigers finished eighth in the American League. Remarkably, he went just 5-19 that season before winning a career-best 20 games the following season.
Trucks finished his career with a 177-135 mark (114-96 with Detroit, for whom he played 12 seasons) and a 3.39 ERA. He pitched nearly 2,700 innings in his career, striking out 1,534 batters.
He also spent time with the White Sox (three years), the Kansas City A's (two), the Yankees (one) and the St. Louis Browns (one). Trucks was twice an All-Star (1949 and '54) and finished fifth in the Most Valuable Player Award voting in '53.