If they were of the same generation, I’d say they were separated at birth. You be the judge:
You know who the gent on your right is. Yep, that’s Tom Hanks, whose closest flirtation with baseball was starring in the role of a baseball manager for an all-women’s team in the classic film, A League of Their Own. You may not be as familiar with the gentleman on your left, Del Ennis, a star outfielder of the Philadelphia Phillies in the late 1940s and ’50s, surely one of the better ballplayers snubbed by the Hall of Fame. Other than during their magical year of 1950, the Whiz Kids Phils were a light-hitting bunch, making it astounding that during the period of 1949 to 1957 Ennis accumulated more RBIs than anyone in baseball other than Stan Musial.
Del’s name came up the other day when Ryan Howard hit a homer to pass Ennis on the Phillies all-time home run list, jumping into distant second place behind Hall-of-Famer Michael Jack Schmidt. Ennis was a native Philadelphian, under-appreciated in his time. It’s good to see his career revisited, albeit briefly. He may not have been in a league of his own, but for the caliber of talent on the Phils in those days he was mighty impressive.