Priddy boy makes good.
While it was likely done more for the publicity than in a serious vein, when Cleveland Indians owner Bill Veeck acquired John Berardino from the St. Louis Browns in the 1948 pre-season, Berardino’s contract called for Veeck to pay for a $100,000 insurance policy protecting the player in the event of significant facial injury as a result of playing baseball.
Berardino had played for St. Louis in the 1947 season, then been traded to the Washington Senators for Gerry Priddy. That deal fell through when Berardino announced that he was retiring from pro ball to concentrate on his movie career.
At the time he was filming the horse racing movie Winner’s Circle.
Working in concert with producer Richard F. Polimer, who held Berardino’s Hollywood contract, Veeck arranged a deal whereby Berardino would play for the Indians from spring training through the end of the season and any post-season in which Cleveland was involved (the Indians won the Word Series in 1948).
After the baseball season, Berardino was free to work in the movies.
Berardino, a handsome leading-man type, juggled baseball and movie careers until he retired from ballplaying after the 1952 season. He’d come to the majors in 1939 and spent the 1943-45 seasons in the military.
Posted: April 19, 2013 at 05:12 AM | 5 comment(s)
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