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Player Profile: Pumpsie Green

Name: Elijah Jerry "Pumpsie" Green
second baseman, shortstop; right-handed batter
Lived: 1933 -
Career span: 1959- 1963
Hall of Fame? no
Primary teams: Boston Red Sox 1959-1962
Best Year: 1961 .260 avg., 6 HR, 33 runs
Major awards: none
Rank on Greatest Players list: n/a

Player Profile: Pumpsie Green was the first black player to play for the Boston Red Sox, who were the last major league team to integrate. That's Pumpsie's major claim to fame. Otherwise he had a brief, unremarkable career, but I think that little footnote to history is significant enough to make him worth remembering.

I had previously asked if anyone knew how Pumpsie got his nickname. This information was provided by Dan Gay:

"Coach Green" was one of my high school baseball coaches at Berkeley High School (Berkeley, CA) in the early 80's. It was my understanding that he got the nickname "Pumpsie" because he always pumped his mitt with his fist much like what a catcher might do. Coach Green is still in Berkeley, CA and my folks still bump into him from time to time. He's probably one of the nicest guys I know.