R “Lonny” Frey was born on August 23, 1910 in
St Louis, Missouri. He signed with York of the New York-Pennsylvania League in
1932 and batted .290 in 117 games.
In 1933, he moved up to Nashville of the Southern Association and made
his major league debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers on August 29,
appearing in 34 games and batting .319. Frey became the Dodgers
starting shortstop for the next three seasons before being traded to
the Cubs in 1937. The following year the Cubs sold him to
where he blossomed as a solid-hitting infielder and was a National
League all-star in 1939, 1941 and 1943. He led the league with 22
steals in 1940.
Frey was 33-years-old when
he entered military service on December 11, 1943. He took basic
training at Jefferson Barracks, Missouri,
and was then posted to Fort Riley, Kansas.
Private Frey became a key member of the Fort Riley Centaurs ball
team that featured Murry Dickson, Harry Walker, Pete Reiser and Al
Brazle. The Centaurs were Western Victory League champions in 1944
with Frey –an all-star selection - leading the circuit with a .450
Frey remained at Fort Riley
through 1945 and was discharged on November 14. He was 35 when he
returned to the Reds in 1946, appearing in 111 games and batting
.246. The Reds sold Frey to the Cubs in 1947, who, in turn, passed
him on to the Yankees in June of that year. He saw only limited duty
with the Yankees and spent a good part of the season with
of the American Association.
Frey was signed by the New York Giants in May 1948 and played 29
games in what proved to be his last season in the major leagues. He
was with Buffalo
in 1949 and Seattle
of the Pacific Coast League the following