The stocky Laabs was a wartime hero for the St. Louis Browns
when they won their
only pennant in 1944. Used sparingly all season, he had only three home runs before
he hit two against the Yankees on the season's last day to win the pennant-clinching
Laabs had good power, finishing second in the AL in 1942 with 27 HR. He had
a knack for timely hits, leading the AL in pinch hits in 1940. But he was strikeout
prone and led the AL (105) in 1943. In 1938, when Cleveland's Bob Feller struck out
18 Tigers, Laabs was a five-time victim.