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Now catching… 007
APRIL 21, 1934
Little used catcher
Moe Berg of the Washington Senators played in his 117th consecutive errorless game on this day in 1934, a new American League record. It took him four years. Good thing he had another skill to fall back on – spying.
Moe Berg actually had a long major league career – 16 years, so he must have had something going for him. It was his catching. He was a very good catcher, but a slow runner and a mediocre hitter.
Even before anyone knew Berg’s secret background, the baseball world was amazed and flabbergasted by the guy.
Casey Stengel called Moe Berg, “The strangest man ever to play baseball.” Let me count the ways, he was a
Princeton educated intellectual who studied several languages including Latin, Greek and Sanskrit, the classical language of
Southeast Asia. While in the majors he attended the Sorbonne in
Paris, and later
School, finishing second in his class. It was said of Berg, "he could speak a dozen languages but couldn’t hit in any of them."
When a major league all-star team was picked to tour
Japan in 1934, there was Moe Berg along with the likes of
Jimmie Foxx, Lou Gehrig and
It was somewhat strange that Berg would join the ranks of those future
Hall of Famers. It wasn’t until years later that it was learned, while
trip Berg was secretly taking pictures of Japanese shipyards and
military installations. He did such a good job, he went to work for the
Office of Strategic Services, which later evolved into the Central
Come back tomorrow