Dodgers World Series Champion Don Demeter Passes Away
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Kelvin Kuo/USA TODAY Sports

Former Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Don Demeter passed away Monday night at the age of 86. He most notably was part of the 1959 team that captured the franchise’s first World Series championship since relocating to the West Coast.

Demeter signed with the Brooklyn Dodgers right out of high school in 1953 and would make his MLB debut three years later. After a successful season with Double-A Fort Worth, he appeared in three games for the Dodgers and went 1-for-3 with a home run.

Demeter spent the entire 1957 campaign with Triple-A St. Paul and did not return to the big leagues until the following season — the organization’s first in L.A. The Oklahoma native batted .189 with five home runs and eight RBI across 43 games in his second crack at the Majors.

Having been a part-time player in each of his first two MLB seasons, Demeter was named the Dodgers’ starting center fielder in 1959. He posted career bests in several categories, including home runs (18), RBI (70) and on-base plus slugging (.731).

Demeter’s highlight of the season was hitting three two-run home runs in a walk-off win against the San Francisco Giants on April 21. He became the first player in Dodgers history to accomplish the feat.

Demeter appeared in all six games during the 1959 World Series against the Chicago White Sox and collected three hits in 12 at-bats.

Demeter spent parts of the next two seasons with the Dodgers before being traded to the Philadelphia Phillies in 1961. In 264 games for Brooklyn and L.A., he hit .247/.285/.433 with 34 home runs and 110 RBI over 730 plate appearances.

Demeter went on to enjoy additional stints with the Detroit Tigers, Boston Red Sox and Cleveland Indians before retiring at the end of the 1967 season. In 11 MLB seasons, he batted .265/.307/.459 with 163 home runs and 563 RBI across 1,109 games.

Dodgers’ losses in 2021

This year has been a difficult one for the Dodgers as they have mourned the deaths of Sandra Scully, Tommy and Jo Lasorda, Stan Williams, Mike Marshall, Solly Drake and Julio Lugo, among others.

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