Warren, TX – Grady Hatton has died, aged 90. The former major league third baseman went on to manage the Houston Astros in the 1960s.
In a storied career, Grady Edgebert Hatton Jr. was a baseball player, coach, manager, and executive. Much of his playing career was as third baseman and second baseman for the Cincinnati Reds, but he was always identified closely with his native Texas. He was born in Beaumont, attended the University of Texas at Austin, and managed minor league teams in Houston and San Antonio. He was a significant contributor to the early years of Major League Baseball’s Houston Astros.
Somewhat fittingly, he also passed away in Texas. Granddaughter Alyssa Hatton confirmed Grady Hatton died Thursday in Warren, the rural East Texas Piney Woods town that Hatton called home for 40 years.
Uniquely, Hatton batted left-handed and threw right-handed. He arrived at the majors in 1946 when he made his debut against the Chicago Cubs. In that first game he went 2 for 3, drove in a run, and scored a run.
Over a 14-year career with Cincinnati, the Chicago White Sox, Boston Red Sox, St. Louis Cardinals, Baltimore Orioles and Chicago Cubs, Hatton batted .254 with 91 home runs.
At the end of his playing career, he served as player-coach for the Cubs before joining the Astros — then known as the Houston Colt .45s — as director of player personnel in their maiden 1962 season. He managed the Astros from 1966-68, producing a 164-221 record. Hatton was replaced as skipper by Harry Walker midway through the 1968 campaign.
He stayed with the Astros as a scout from 1968 through 1972, and as a major league coach in 1973-74. He remained active in baseball up until the late 1980s when he served as a scout for the San Francisco Giants.
A funeral is scheduled for Monday at First Baptist Church of Warren. Grady Hatton will be buried Mount Pisgah Cemetery near Woodville.