Tuesday, May 20, 2008 | Don’t let Jerry Coleman fool you.
If you judged his baseball career by what he says on radio broadcasts of Padres games, you’d think he was a minor leaguer that stumbled his way into the New York Yankees World Series champion lineups.
Don’t believe it. Ted Leitner, Coleman’s long-time broadcast partner, often tells listeners not to believe Coleman when he downplays his career.
Truth is, if time permitted, Leitner could tell you that Coleman was the 1949 Rookie of the Year, an All-Star second baseman, the 1950 World Series MVP and much more. The athletic Coleman and Hall-of-Fame shortstop Phil Rizzuto were one of the best double-play combinations in baseball.
If you judged Coleman’s military career by the very few comments he makes when asked about it, you’d think he was a character that inspired the Gomer Pyle TV comedy series.
Don’t believe it. There’s a reason everyone refers to Coleman as “The Colonel.”