Hall of Fame Pitcher Robin Roberts of Whiz Kid Phils Dies at 83

Robin Roberts, a pitcher who helped the Philadelphia Phillies reach the World Series in 1950 and went on to gain a spot in the National Baseball Hall of Fame, has died. He was 83.

Roberts died of natural causes this morning at his home in Temple Terrace, Florida, the team said in an e-mailed news release.

Roberts played 19 Major League Baseball seasons, including his first 14 with the Phillies from 1948 through 1961. He also played for the Baltimore Orioles, Houston Astros and Chicago Cubs before retiring in 1966 with a 286-245 record and a 3.41 earned run average.

He went 20-11 with a 3.02 ERA for the 1950 Phillies’ team known as the Whiz Kids. Philadelphia reached the World Series before being swept by the New York Yankees. Roberts had least 20 wins every season from 1950 through 1955, posting a career-best 28-7 record in 1952.

Roberts pitched in 676 games, starting 609, and holds the distinction of giving up a major-league record 505 home runs. It’s a mark that could soon be passed by current Phillies pitcher Jamie Moyer, second on the all-time list with 498.

Roberts remained devoted to baseball and the Phillies in retirement. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1976 and returned each year for the induction ceremonies.

“Dad didn’t miss a Phillies game on television, including last night,” his son Jim said in a statement. “He really loved this team and was so thrilled that he was included in the World Series festivities the last two years.”

The Phillies won MLB’s championship in 2008 and lost the World Series to the Yankees last year.

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Robin Evan Roberts was born on Sept. 30, 1926, in Springfield, Illinois.

He was recruited to play basketball at Michigan State University before becoming a top pitcher who threw a no-hitter against the University of Michigan, according to his Hall of Fame biography.

His wife, Mary, died five years ago. Roberts is survived by four sons, one brother, seven grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Funeral arrangements are pending, the team said.

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