Cerro Gordo County Iowa
Part of the IAGenWeb Project
Frank Secory got biggest hit of his life in sixth game
by John Skipper
MASON CITY -- It was the 12th inning of the sixth game of the 1945 World Series between the Detroit Tigers and Chicago Cubs.
Frank Secory, a native of Mason City, was about to get the biggest hit of his life.
The Cubs were down three games to two and were in a 7-7 tie as they fought to stay alive for a seventh game.
In the bottom of the 12th inning, Secory, a reserve [left] outfielder, got a pinch hit single. He was taken out for a pinch runner. When Stan Hack doubled, the pinch runner scored the winning run - a run set up by Secory's single.
The Cubs went on to lose the seventh game and have not been in a World Series since - until Tuesday night.
[Page A2] When Secory retired as a player, he became a National League umpire and worked six All-Star games, four World Series and nine no-hitters. He died in 1995 at the age of 82.
Secory was the great uncle of Joel and Mike Secory of Clear Lake, who remember him well.
"When we were kids, we used to play ball with National League baseballs that Frank gave grandpa," said Joel.
"I remember a time when we got tickets for a four-game series between the Cubs and the Dodgers in Chicago," he said. "We had seats right behind home plate. Frank was the home plate umpire and he didn't like Leo Durocher the Cubs manager. Hardly anybody did.
"There was a play where Randy Hundley, the Cub catcher started to argue and Durocher came out of the dugout. Frank took off his mask and grandpa said, 'Uh oh, somebody's goin'.' I think it was Durocher," said Joel>
He said he also remembers going to the Albert Pick Hotel in Chicago after one of the games. "The umpires were there, sitting around having a beer and talking about the game. It was fun to be there."
Mike Secory also has good memories of his great uncle.
"His family moved to Michigan when he was quite young but the used to come back here a lot to visit family," he said. "He was real friendly.
"Grandpa had all sorts of baseballs signed by players like Yogi Berra that Frank had given him," said Mike.
He said he remembered one other characteristic of his great uncle. "Frank hated to fly. He used to drive from one city to another," he said.
And who will the Secorys be rooting for in this year's World Series?
"The Cubs - you bet," said Mike.
"The Cleveland Indians," said Joel. He said the first baseball glove he ever got had the name of Jim Piersall, an Indians outfielder, on it. "I started following the Indians then and I have ever since," he said.
Transcriber's Note: Francis Edward "Frank" Secory was born on August 24, 1912 at Mason City, Iowa. He played from 1940 to 1946 for the Cincinnati Reds, Detroit Tigers and the Chicago Cubs. His best season
was 1944, when he batted .321 in 22 games for the Cubs. He died April 7, 1995 at Port Huron, Michigan, and was interred at Willow Grove Cemetery, Armada, Michigan.
Frank was inducted Western Michigan University Athletic Hall of Fame in 1976, and into the Port Huron MI Sports Hall of Fame in 1977, with the inaugural class. He was inducted into the Muskegon, Michigan Area
Sports Hall of Fame in 1989.
Transcription and note by Sharon R. Becker, October of 2016