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Grady Hatton and Fred Whitfield, former Reds players, pass away

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  • Grady Hatton and Fred Whitfield, former Reds players, pass away

    Longtime Red Grady Hatton spent over eight years in a Cincinnati uniform, from 1946 to 1954, serving as the team's primary third baseman during most of his tenure with the team. Blessed with an excellent eye at the plate, he never struck out more than walked in a season in Cincinnati.

    Grady Hatton Jr., a Beaumont-native, major league baseball player and manager of the Houston Astros, died Thursday morning from causes relating to cancer, his daughter-in-law said.

    Hatton was born in Beaumont and played in the majors from 1946-60 after attending the University of Texas-Austin. He made his major league debut on April 16, 1946 as a 23-year-old second baseman with the Cincinnati Reds. In 1952, he was named a National League All-Star.
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    Fred Whitfield spent two years as a backup in Cincinnati, 1968 and 1969, hitting .257 with six home runs and 32 RBI in his first year with the team. He even slugged a home run against Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Bunning in 1968.

    Fred Dwight Whitfield Sr., of Vandiver, went to be with the Lord on Jan. 31, 2013, at the age of 75.
    He is survived by his wife, Helen Leverton Whitfield; one daughter, Tammy Acre (Mike); five sons, Fred Whitfield Jr. (Lynn), Teddy Whitfield (Debbie), Jeff Whitfield (Jan), Max Whitfield (Tracy), Derek Whitfield (Tammy); and granddaughter by birth, daughter by choice, Cherie Bailey; as well as a host of loving grandchildren and great-grandchildren; and one sister, Joy Wear.

    Fred enjoyed a 13-year professional baseball career and retired from Anderson Electric. He was an avid outdoorsman and enjoyed playing bluegrass and gospel music on his guitar.
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