Baseball Magazine

The 25 Best Chicago White Sox of All Time: #22. Sherm Lollar

By Cbr66 @JKries

The 25 Best Chicago White Sox of All Time: #22. Sherm LollarSherm Lollar, who once competed for a starting job with catching legend, Yogi Berra, was the backbone of the 50′s era Chicago White Sox, leading the team to a pennant in 1959.

Lollar broke into the big leagues with the Cleveland Indians in 1946, but was dealt to the New York Yankees in 1947. The big, right-handed hitting catcher made a World Series appearance with the Yankees in ’47 against the Brooklyn Dodgers, going 3-for-4 with two doubles.

As fate would have it, the Yankees decided to go with the left-handed hitting Berra, who used Yankee Stadium’s short right field porch to his advantage during his illustrious Hall of Fame career. Berra would make 14 World Series appearances during the 50′s and 60′s with the dominant Yankees, and he also played in 18 All-Star games.

After naming Berra their starting catcher, the Yankees dealt Lollar to the lowly St. Louis Browns. In Lollar’s three seasons with the Browns, they lost no less than 96 games per season.

Lollar went on to make six All-Star appearances while with the White Sox. His on-base percentage was .358 during his 12 seasons in Chicago.

Lollar, who struggled with the glove early in his career, went on to have a career caught-stealing percentage of 46.8. During the White Sox’s pennant run of 1959, Lollar threw out the most runners in the American League. The Sox pitching staff had the lowest ERA that year as well, giving up an average of only 3.29 runs per game.

While Lollar wasn’t particular powerful with the bat for most of his career, his plate discipline made him a valuable part of the White Sox teams of the late 50′s. Lollar spent most of ’59 in the cleanup role, knocking out 22 home runs, and driving in 84 runs.

Year Tm Lg G H HR RBI BB SO OBP SLG OPS

1943 CLE-min AA 12 4 0 1 7 6 .268 .118 .386

1944 CLE-min AA 126 95 15 72 83 52 .394 .416 .809

1945 CLE-min AA 139 169 34 111 101 40 .483 .659 1.143

1946 CLE-min AAA 67 52 20 56 40 39 .356 .532 .888

1947 NYY-min AAA 111 100 16 64 50 29 .376 .468 .844

1952 CHW AL 132 90 13 50 54 34 .354 .384 .738

1953 CHW AL 113 96 8 54 47 29 .388 .416 .804

1954 CHW AL 107 77 7 34 37 28 .334 .351 .686

1955 CHW AL 138 111 16 61 68 34 .374 .408 .782

1956 CHW AL 136 132 11 75 53 34 .383 .438 .821

1957 CHW AL 101 90 11 70 35 24 .342 .393 .736

1958 CHW AL 127 115 20 84 57 37 .367 .454 .821

1959 CHW AL 140 134 22 84 55 49 .345 .451 .796

1960 CHW AL 129 106 7 46 42 39 .326 .356 .682

1961 CHW AL 116 95 7 41 37 22 .360 .380 .740

1962 CHW AL 84 59 2 26 32 23 .369 .350 .719

1963 CHW AL 35 17 0 6 8 7 .317 .288 .605

G H HR RBI BB SO OBP SLG OPS

CHW (12 yrs) 1358 1122 124 631 525 360 .358 .402 .759

Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/27/2011.

One of Lollar’s best performances on offense occurred during the White Sox’s 29-6 trouncing of of the Kansas City Athletics on April 23, 1955. Lollar went 5-for-6 while driving in 5 runs. Most notably, Lollar had two hits in two different innings during the game, becoming only the second player to accomplish that feat. He smacked a solo home run and a two-run single during the second inning. He then knocked two singles in the Sox’s six-run sixth inning.

Lollar was a steady presence behind the plate for the White Sox during his 12 seasons in Chicago. His 42 home runs from 1958-59, along with his solid defense and handling of pitchers made him a huge asset during the White Sox’s American League championship run in ’59.

-James Kries



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