Baseball in Wartime

Baseball's Greatest Sacrifice

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John "Mule" Miles


Baseball Experience: Negro League
Third Base/Outfield
Military Unit:

Area Served: United States

John “Mule” Miles was born in San Antonio, Texas on August 11, 1922. A distinguished athlete in high school and at Sam Phillips Junior College, he entered military service in 1942, and attended the special Aircraft Mechanic Journeyman Rating School in Tuskegee, Alabama, to assist the nation's first African-American flying training program, the Black Wings. 

Following his discharge in 1946, Miles tried out with the Chicago American Giants and stayed with the team as a third baseman/outfielder through 1949.

Throughout the 1950s, Miles coached and managed baseball and basketball teams in San Antonio. In 1974, he completed a law enforcement course at San Antonio Junior College and became a commissioned officer.

In 1982, Miles received a Certificate of Recognition for Outstanding Contribution to the History of Black Americans from Lackland Air Force Base. He also received the Tuskegee Airmen Heritage Award: Tuskegee Ground Support Maintenance Crew in 1995.

He was “drafted” by the Seattle Mariners in the Negro Leagues Player Draft, held prior to the Major League draft at Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex in Lake Buena Vista, Florida on June 5, 2008. Each Major League club drafted a surviving former Negro Leagues player, who represented every player who did not have the opportunity to play baseball in the major leagues.

Created June 16, 2008. Updated June 25, 2008.

Copyright © 2008 Gary Bedingfield (Baseball in Wartime). All Rights Reserved.