Great Braves Through The Ages: Bob Elliott

When you think of third baseman in Braves history, often overlook the career of the 3rd bagger Bob Elliott who is the focus of this weeks' Great Braves Through The Ages.

When you think of third base and the Braves the names Horner, Chipper, Pendleton and Eddie Mathews come to mind. And they should, after all that group contains two NL mvp's, one NL rookie of the year, one NL batting champion and a member of the 500 home run club and baseball hall of fame. But there was another great third baseman who wore the familiar tomahawk across his chest. This week we meet 1947 National League MVP Bob Elliott.

Robert Irving Elliott was born November 26th 1916 in San Francisco. He began his major league career in 1939 at the age of 22 with the Pirates. Elliott spent 8 seasons in Pittsburg before being traded to the Braves in time for the 1947 season. In those 8 seasons with the Pirates Elliott drove in 100 runs or more three times and hit .290 or better 5 times.

In his first season with the Braves Elliott had 176 hits, 35 doubles, 5 triples, 22 home runs, 113 rbi's, scored 93 times and had a .317 batting average gaining him the 1947 NL MVP award and a all-star selection.

In 1948 Bob had another all-star season collecting 153 hits, 24 doubles, 5 triples, 23 home runs, 100 rbi's, scored 99 runs and posted a .283 average while leading the Braves to thier first NL pennant in 34 years. Elliott had a great World Series against the Indians hitting .333 with 2 home runs, 5 rbi's and 4 runs scored. The Braves however would go on to lose the series to the Indians in six games.

Bob Elliott continued to play for the Braves until the 1952 season when he was traded to the Giants to make room for a young third baseman named Eddie Mathews. When being courted by almost every major league team the high school phenom Mathews wasn't sure about signing with the Braves due to the presence of Bob Elliott in the everyday lineup. But Mathews' father and a scout for the Braves convinced him that by the time he went through the minors Elliott would be retired or no longer a starting player.

Elliott spent the entire 1952 season with the Giants and split the 1953 season between the St. Louis Browns (Orioles) and the Chicago White Sox before retiring at the age of 36.

In his five seasons with the Braves Bob drove in 100 or more runs 3 times, hit 22 or more home runs 3 times, had 28 or more doubles 4 times and was selected to 3 NL all-star teams.

Elliott managed the 1960 Kansas City Athletics to a record of 58 wins and 96 losses. Bob would be replaced by another former Brave Sid Gordon. Bob Elliott passed away on May 4th 1966 at the age of 50.

Bob Elliott career Braves stats
Games: 718
At Bats: 2,588
Hits: 763
Doubles: 145
Triples: 22
Home runs: 101
Rbi's: 466
Runs: 436
SB: 13
Avg: .295

Bob Elliott career stats
Games: 1978
At Bats: 7,141
Hits: 2,061
Doubles: 382
Triples: 94
Home Runs: 170
Rbi's: 1195
Runs: 1064
SB: 60
Avg: .289

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