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Choo Choo Coleman


Clarence (Choo Choo) Coleman, a catcher for the Mets in 1962 and '63, when they went 91--231, died of cancer on Aug. 15 in Orangeburg, S.C. He was 80. Coleman only played in parts of four seasons, but his legend has stood the test of time. He earned his nickname for his speed, which was more notable than his fielding. In '63 he had 15 errors and 11 passed balls in just 66 starts. Those deficiencies could be as hard on pitchers as himself; Chuck Churn called Coleman the toughest player he ever pitched to. He was perhaps most beloved for his unwitting one-liners. According to one anecdote, when Mets broadcaster Ralph Kiner asked Coleman, "What's your wife's name, and what's she like?" he replied, "Her name is Mrs. Coleman—and she likes me, Bub."