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Jack Burns
First baseman
Born: August 31, 1907(1907-08-31)
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Died: April 18, 1975 (aged 67)
Brighton, Massachusetts
Batted: Left Threw: Left 
MLB debut
September 17, 1930 for the St. Louis Browns
Last MLB appearance
September 27, 1936 for the Detroit Tigers
Career statistics
Batting average     .279
Home runs     44
Runs batted in     417
Career highlights and awards
  • Led AL in games played: 1934
  • Led AL in sacrifice hits: 1935
  • Led AL first basemen in assists: 1931, 1932

John Irving Burns (August 31, 1907 — April 18, 1975), nicknamed "Slug," was an American first baseman, coach and scout in Major League Baseball. A native of Cambridge, Massachusetts, Burns stood 6' (183 cm) and weighed 175 pounds (79.4 kg) in his playing days, and batted and threw left-handed.

Burns' professional playing career began in 1928 in the New England League. After leading the Class A Western League in home runs with 36 in 1929, his contract was purchased by the St. Louis Browns of the American League. After a brief MLB trial in 1930, Burns became the starting first baseman for the Browns in 1931. He handled those duties until he was traded to the Detroit Tigers on April 30, 1936, for pitcher Chief Hogsett. He returned to the minor leagues at the end of that campaign for the remainder of his playing career. In Burns' finest season for the Browns, 1932, he scored 111 runs, batted .305, hit 11 homers and drove in 70 RBI. Over his major league career (1930-36), he appeared in 890 games, and batted .280 with 44 homers and 417 runs batted in. He led American League first basemen in assists in 1931 and 1932.

Burns became a manager in the minor leagues with the 1938 Toronto Maple Leafs of the International League, replacing Dan Howley on June 27 with the Leafs in eighth place. He rallied the team to a fifth place standing that year, but when Toronto finished last in 1939, Burns was released. After World War II, he joined the Boston Red Sox farm system, managing their Eastern League affiliates in Scranton and Albany from 1949-54. His 1952 Albany Senators won the league pennant.

Burns then spent five seasons (1955-59) as the Red Sox' third-base coach, working primarily under manager Pinky Higgins. He scouted for Boston from 1960 until his death, at Brighton, Massachusetts, at the age of 67.


  • Spink, J.G. Taylor, ed., The Baseball Register 1956 edition. St. Louis: The Sporting News.
  • The Baseball Encyclopedia, Macmillan Books, 10th edition.




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