Ernie Bickhaus

Inducted 2011.  No Player in the History of the School Went on to Have More Success Professionally Than He Did.

It has been 70 years since Ernie Bickhaus played baseball at Quincy Notre Dame, and no player in the history of the school went on to have more success professionally than he did.

During his senior season at Notre Dame in the spring of 1941, Bickhaus and Don Ostermuller handled most of the pitching duties for the Golden Streaks as they went 12-2, losing to Bowen in the district title game. The highlights for Bickhaus that season were a combined no-hitter against Holy Rosary of Monroe City, Mo., a 15-strikeout performance against Jacksonville Routt and a five-hit complete game victory over undefeated Bowen during the regular season when he outdueled Roger Schieferdecker, who pitched four no-hitters that year.

Bickhaus went to Illinois College briefly before signing a minor league contract with the Philadelphia Phillies and started his professional career in 1943 in Elmira, N.Y. He went on to play from 1944-51 in the St. Louis Browns organization, playing for the last four seasons at the Class AAA level in Toledo, Baltimore, Seattle and Toronto. He concluded his career with a brief stint with the Class AAA Charleston Senators, an affiliate of the Chicago White Sox. His best season was in 1945 with Class A Elmira, when he posted a 12-11 record with a 2.57 earned run average. His career minor league record was 51-72 with a 4.04 earned run average.

After he left baseball, he worked for a while at Lockhart Sporting Goods in downtown Quincy before eventually settling in Hettick and owning a sporting goods store and a hardware store in Granite City and Godfrey. He died on Oct. 6, 2007 in Carlinville. He was married to his wife, Elizabeth, for 61 years. They had three sons — Thomas, Bradley and Steven — and three daughters — Barbara, Ann and Patti.

We wish Ernie could be here and thank for personally for this honor — and it is that. Those high school years are some of the best, and he recognized that. This was due to the special nuns and priests who he was fortunate to have — and that includes the coaches (baseball and basketball) who made sports a big influence in his life and left him so many wonderful friends and memories. — Betty Bickhaus

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