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Lou Brock - Reared In Small Southern Town

baseball teacher report sports

Brock was born on June 18, 1939, in El Dorado, Arkansas, to Maud and Paralee Brock. He was raised in nearby Collinston, Louisiana. His family relocated there after his father, Maud, left when he was two. Brock described

Lou Brock

his hometown in an issue of Sports Illustrated, "It was a farm community, in the heart of what you might call the Bible Belt. Playing baseball on Sunday was considered taboo.… Our house was typical of down there-a four-bedroom shack with a porch and a swing."

After Brock's parents split up, his mother remarried. She married three times and had nine children. To help support her large family, Paralee Brock did domestic work. The family also farmed, raising everything from cotton and corn, to cows and pigs.

As a youngster, Brock wasn't much interested in baseball. It was actually a bit of childhood mischief that got Brock involved in the game. One day in school, the rebellious Brock let loose a spit wad aimed at the girl in front of him. Brock missed his target and ended up hitting the teacher. As a punishment, the teacher sent Brock to the library. Once there, he was asked to research some sports figures like Joe DiMaggio and Jackie Robinson and compose a report for the class. The teacher wanted to make Brock and his classmates more aware of what was happening in the world outside of Collinston. When Brock presented the report, his classmates sneered at him and called him the teacher's pet. Presenting the report was difficult for the shy youngster, but in the end, it changed his life.

As Brock told Sports Illustrated, "The most intriguing thing to me was that big league players got $8 a day for meal money. All I could think of was of how much penny candy that would buy." From then on, Brock was hooked on baseball.

By his freshman year at Union High School in Mer Rouge, Louisiana, Brock was playing baseball. His senior year, he batted over .500. He graduated in 1957, third in his class of 105.

Lou Brock - Slugged Way Onto College Baseball Team [next]

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