Harold Joseph “Pie” Traynor played all 17 years of his career as a 3rd baseman for the Pittsburgh Pirates, occasionally playing shortstop. In 1925 he led the Pirates to the World Series Championship, with Traynor contributing a home run off of fellow Hall of Famer Walter Johnson. Despite not being a power hitter, he had 371 doubles and 164 triples to go with his 58 home runs and drove in 1273 RBI while averaging .320 for his career. Traynor went on to be a manager for the Pirates after his playing days and was also a broadcaster for the team for 21 years. Traynor was named to All Star games in 1933 and 1934, the first two years that the All Star game existed, and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1948 by the Baseball Writers of America, the first year that they selected the players. In 1969 he was voted the 3rd baseman for Baseball’s Centennial Team.
Traynor was given his memorable nickname by Father John Nangle, a Somerville, MA clergyman and shopkeeper. Young Harold would always ask for the same treat when he visited Nangle’s shop, a slice of pie.
August 7, 2011