Senators Friday: Bennie Daniels

1962 Topps

Bennie Daniels joined the Senators in December, 1960, when the Pirates traded him, R C Stevens, and Harry Bright for Bobby Shantz; he was regarded as a retread, a failed prospect who had never made good on his promise. He made his debut at the second Griffith Stadium on April 15th, losing 3-1 to the Indians. He went 7.1 innings and struck out 6 while walking 3, losing to Mudcant Grant, who had owned the Senators. Here’s a shot of Senators catcher Pete Daley tagging out Johnny Temple during that game:

The game was an apt preview of his 1961 season, as he would be a hard-luck loser, pitching well (a 3.44 ERA with a 1.245 WHIP for a 114 ERA+) and yet going 12-11. The Senators were not a good team.

1963 Topps

He went into 1962 as a pitcher who would split time as a starter and reliever, but regarded as having real promise to expand on the promise he had shown in 1961 and become a real breakout pitcher. Lots of people in the media tagged him as a pitcher to watch that year, and indeed was the opening day pitcher against the Tigers’ Don Mossi.

A Damned Handsome Man.

All in all, however, the year would be a disappointment: he ended up with a 7-16 record, 4.85 ERA, and 84 ERA+. He hung on with the Senators, though, pitching from 1961 to 1965, all told, ending his Senators career with a 37-60 record, 4.14 ERA, 1.351 WHIP, and almost 1 home run every game. 1965 was his last year with the team, at which point he seems to have dropped off the radar. I guess he retired? I don’t know, but my goal is to eventually have all the cards from his tenure with the team, just in the interest of completeness.

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