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Today In Dodger History: Pee Wee Reese Announces His Retirement

Pee Wee ReeseDecember 18, 1958

Dodger infielder Pee Wee Reese announced his retirement after 16 seasons with the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers on this date in 1958.

Reese was 40-years-old and came off a season in which he hit .224 in 59 games for the Dodgers. The longtime shortstop joined the team in the trek from Brooklyn to Los Angeles. Reese ended his career as a .269 hitter and was a 10-time All-Star. He missed three seasons from 1942-1945 while being away on military duty.

The shortstop was signed by a Boston Red Sox minor league team and was later traded to the Dodgers for $35,000 four players to be named later. Reese remained in the minors until the 1940 season when he was called up at the age of 21. He played just 84 games for the team that season after a broken heel bone limited him. Reese hit .272 with 85 hits and 15 stolen bases.

He played two more seasons before the military service break, making the All-Star team in 1941. He came back in 1946 and resumed his high level of play. From 1946-1954, Reese was named an All-Star and finished in the top-10 of MVP voting six times. His best season was in 1949, when he hit .279 with 16 home runs and 73 RBI in 155 games.

Not only was Reese known for his play on the field, but he also became known for his support of Jackie Robinson in his time with the Dodgers. He became known for his embrace of Robinson on the field in Cincinnati and even prompted a book about their friendship titled The Boys of Summer. Following his retirement, Reese became a play-by-play announcer for CBS and NBC. In 1984, he was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame and his number one uniform was retired by the Dodgers.

Reese passed away in 1999 and will forever be remembered as one of the all-time great Dodgers.

Vincent Samperio

Vince is currently the Associate Editor and Social Media Manager for Dodgers Nation. Hailing from San Pedro, CA and a student at Cal State Long Beach, Vince has previously written for the Daily 49er and LASF Magazine.

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