The Trojans' baseball coach for forty-five years died today in Glendale from complications of a stroke. Born Raoul Martial Dedeaux, he coached at least sixty USC players who went to the major leagues, among them Tom Seaver and Mark McGwire. Dedeaux himself got into two games with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1935, as Bob Timmermann recounts. From the Shav Glick-written obituary at LATimes.com:
"I didn't learn to throw a slider from him, but he taught me more important things," said Hall of Fame pitcher Seaver at his old coach's 90th birthday party in February 2004. "I learned about passion for the game, about concentration, about being part of a team. He taught us all how to conduct ourselves in a uniform."
Dedeaux attended Hollywood High School before playing ball at USC. As coach his teams won eleven national championships, and today's Trojans play on Dedeaux Field.
* Oddity: Dedeaux's Dodgers debut came before a crowd of 184 (!). His name was one of the less colorful in a lineup with Rattlesnake Baker, Whitey Ock, Frenchy Bordagaray and Baldy Sherlock. L.A. Dodgers coached by Dedeaux at USC: Bob Lillis, Johnny Werhas, Ron Fairly, Len Gabrielson, Bobby Mitchell, Ray Lamb and Stu Pederson. 9:15 pm