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Phillies oldest alum, pitcher Schmidt, passes away

Right-handed pitcher Freddy Schmidt, the Phillies' oldest alumnus at 96 years old, died on Saturday at Lehigh Valley Hospital. He had been a resident of Wind Gap, Pa., since 1994.

Schmidt was fourth among all oldest living Major League players. It is believed he was the oldest World Series survivor. He was born in Hartford, Conn., on Feb. 9, 1916.

He played 15 seasons of pro baseball, 12 in the Minor Leagues. His Major League experience came with the St. Louis Cardinals (1944, 1946 and 1947), Phillies (1947) and Chicago Cubs (1947). In 85 big league games (15 starts), he was 13-11 with a 3.75 ERA. Schmidt was drafted by the Army during World War II in 1945.

For his Minor League career, he was 140-134 with a 3.87 ERA, pitching in 376 games.

Schmidt was a member of the World Champion Cardinals in 1944 and proudly wore his ring. He pitched once in the World Series, throwing 3 1/3 scoreless innings.

He and center fielder Harry Walker were traded to the Phillies on May 3, 1947, for outfielder Ron Northey. He was 5-8 for the Phillies before being claimed on waivers by the Cubs Sept. 15 of the same season.

Succeeding Mr. Schmidt as the oldest living former Phillies player are second baseman Ford (Moon) Mullen and shortstop Alex Monchak. Each is 95 years of age.

Schmidt had participated in the annual Phillies Alumni Night every August for the past several years, including this past August.

Schmidt is survived by his wife, Ellen Lancaster-Schmidt; two step-children; four step-grandchildren; two step-great grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Tuesday at the Schmidt Funeral Home, 202 West Street, Wind Gap. Friends and relatives are invited to a viewing starting at 9 a.m. The burial, with Military Honors, will be private.

Larry Shenk is vice president - alumni relations for the Phillies. Information was obtained from The Express Times and Allentown Call.