Former MSU baseball coach Danny Litwhiler inducted into College Baseball Hall Of Fame


MSU manager Jake Boss sets his teams lineup/ Photo Credit: MSU Athletic Communications

Nathan Stearns, Sports Broadcast Director

Danny Litwhiler, the longtime former MSU baseball head coach who led the Spartans to three NCAA Tournament berths and two Big Ten championships in 1971 and 1979, was inducted into the College Baseball Hall of Fame on Thursday. He is the first Michigan State representative to be admitted into the Hall of Fame.

“We’re extremely thrilled for not only Danny Litwhiler, but the entire Litwhiler family, for this honor. Skip was a pioneer in all facets of college baseball,” MSU head coach Jake Boss Jr. said. “The impact that Skip left on Michigan State is certainly far reaching, and he was an even better human being than he was a coach, and we’re proud to have our program forever associated with Danny Litwhiler. We’re very happy for this most deserving honor for him and his family.”

Litwhiler is widely considered one of the most iconic trendsetters in baseball history, as he is credited with developing the radar gun and Diamond Dry, a widely used substance that excels at soaking up excess water on baseball and softball fields.

Over an 11-year span in the Major Leagues with the Philadelphia Phillies, Cincinnati Reds, St. Louis Cardinals and Boston Braves, Litwhiler hit 107 home runs, collected 451 RBI’s, had a .281 batting average and was named to the 1942 All-Star team.

In his 28 years as a manager at both MSU and Florida State, Litwhiler had an overall record of 679-445-9 and appeared in 10 separate NCAA tournaments and three College World Series. He compiled a record of 489-362-8 during his time at Michigan State and oversaw the successful career of Spartan legends such as Kirk Gibson, Steve Garvey, Rick Miller and Mel Behney.

He was inducted into the Michigan State Athletics Hall of Fame in 1994 and served as a baseball ambassador in retirement before dying at the age of 95 in 2011. Litwhiler, along with the other 13 inductees, will be formally enshrined in a virtual ceremony on June 26.