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Harlond Benton (Darkie) Clift (August 12, 1912 - April 27, 1992) born in El Reno, Oklahomamarker was a third baseman for the St. Louis Browns (1934-1943) and Washington Senators (1943-1945).

In 12 seasons he played in 1,582 Games, had 5,730 At Bats, 1,070 Runs, 1,558 Hits, 309 Doubles, 62 Triples, 178 Home Runs, 829 RBI, 69 Stolen Bases, 1,070 Walks, .272 Batting Average, .390 On-base percentage, .441 Slugging Percentage, 2,525 Total Bases and 53 Sacrifice Hits.

Clift is remarkable in baseball history for being the one of the first power-hitting third basemen, posting big offensive numbers at a time when players at that position were more valued for their fielding than hitting.

But Clift was a superb fielder as well. His single season records of 50 double plays and 405 assists in 1937 stood for 34 years.

Unfortunately, Clift labored in relative obscurity for the St. Louis Browns, arguably the worst team of the 1930s, which suffered from abysmal attendance and was totally overshadowed by their city rivals, the Cardinals. Ironically, Clift was traded to the Washington Senators in 1943, and the Browns won the American League pennant the very next season.

A serious case of the mumps and a horse-riding injury late in his career also hurt his chances to display his skills to a wider audience.

As a landmark player Clift certainly deserves greater recognition, but may lack the sustained high performance needed for inclusion in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Clift died in Yakima, Washingtonmarker, at age of 79.

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