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Bill Ford (baseball)

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Subject: Boston Bees players, Buena Vista, Pennsylvania, 1915 in baseball, List of Major League Baseball players (F), List of Pennsylvania State University people
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Bill Ford (baseball)

Bill Ford
Born: (1915-10-14)October 14, 1915
Died: April 6, 1994(1994-04-06) (aged 78)
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
September 27, 1936 for the Boston Bees
Last MLB appearance
September 27, 1936 for the Boston Bees
Career statistics
Games 1
Innings pitched 0
Base on balls 3
Earned runs 2
Earned run average Infinity
Win–loss record 0–0

William Brown Ford (October 14, 1915 – April 6, 1994) was a Major League Baseball pitcher who appeared in one game with the Boston Bees in 1936. His major league career, however, was not listed in the official baseball records until 2003, due to a record keeping error that credited his lone appearance to Boston Bees teammate Gene Ford.


  • Life and career 1
  • 2003 re-discovery 2
  • References 3
  • External links 4

Life and career

Bill Ford was born October 14, 1915 in Buena Vista, Pennsylvania. He attended Penn State University, and played on their baseball team. He threw and batted right-handed, was 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) in height and 200 pounds in weight.

On September 27, 1936, the last day of the season, he made his Major League debut, appearing as the starting pitcher against the Philadelphia Phillies at Baker Bowl in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Still only 20 years old, he was the 5th youngest player in Major League Baseball that season.[1]

After the Braves had taken a 1–0 lead after batting in the first, Ford failed to retire a single batter, walking all three batters he faced. He was relieved by Guy Bush, who allowed two of the runners he inherited to score – these runs were charged to Brown. Bush wound up pitching nine innings of relief, and won the game for the Braves 7–3.[2] Brown, meanwhile, never again played in a Major League game. For his Major League career, he is considered to have an earned run average (ERA) of infinity.

Ford died April 4, 1994 in Jefferson, Pennsylvania.[1] He was buried in Mount Vernon Cemetery in Elizabeth, Pennsylvania.

2003 re-discovery

Ford did not appear in any official records of Major League baseball during his lifetime. Then in 2003, research by Rick Benner of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) discovered that Bill Ford's September 27, 1936, appearance had been incorrectly attributed to Gene Ford, who had appeared in one game for Boston earlier that year. The official records have been corrected to show Gene Ford having pitched in one game for the 1936 Bees (on June 17), and Bill Ford also having pitched in one game for the 1936 Bees (on September 27).

Although researchers will very occasionally find a previously undocumented Major League Baseball player to add to the official records, such players are usually from the 19th century. Finding one who played as late as 1936 is extremely rare.


  1. ^ a b "Bill Ford". Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved March 14, 2014. 
  2. ^ "September 27, 1936 Boston Bees at Philadelphia Phillies Play by Play and Box Score". Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved March 14, 2014. 

External links

  • Career statistics and player information from Baseball-Reference
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