Marvin Eugene Breeding (March 8, 1934 – December 31, 2006) was an infielder who played in Major League Baseball from 1960 through 1963. Breeding batted and threw right-handed. He was born in Decatur, Alabama.
Breeding graduated from Jesuit High School in New Orleans, and then played shortstop for the baseball team at Samford University (then called Howard College). He also was a guard for the basketball squad and place-kicker for the football team whose quarterback then was Bobby Bowden. His slick fielding abilities and a quick bat prompted him to sign with the Baltimore Orioles in 1955.
Breeding reached the major leagues in 1960 with the Orioles, spending three years with them before moving to the Washington Senators and Los Angeles Dodgers. His most productive season came in 1960 as the regular second baseman for Baltimore, when he posted career-highs in batting average (.267), home runs (3), runs (69), RBI (43), hits (147), doubles (25), stolen bases (10) and games played (152), including seven three-hits games. His 117 singles ranked him ninth in the American League.
Before the 1963 season Breeding was sent to the new Washington Senators in a five-players deal, playing at third and second bases. Then, in the midseason he was traded to the Dodgers. While in Los Angeles, Breeding served as a backup for injured Jim Gilliam (2B) and Maury Wills (SS). He sat the bench as a member of the Dodgers in their four-game sweep over the New York Yankees during the 1963 World Series.
In a four-season majors career, Breeding was a .250 hitter with seven home runs and 92 RBI in 415 games. After that, he played in the minor leagues for the Dodgers, Orioles, Giants, Astros, White Sox, and Twins organizations.
Following his baseball retirement in 1968, Breeding worked as a manufacturer’s representative and eventually started Marve Breeding Enterprises, which included M&B Industries machine shop in Decatur. In February 2006, he was selected to the Samford Baseball Hall of Fame.
Breeding died in his home at the age of 72.
By Dean Hanley
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