By Drew Olson Special to Published Jan 02, 2007 at 3:10 PM
Sam Suplizio, who was a coach for the Brewers' organization in the late 1970s through the 1980s, died of heart failure Friday at his home in Pawleys Island, S.C. He was 74.

Although many Brewers fans probably wouldn't recognize his name, Suplizio had a significant impact on the some of the organization's bigger stars, including Robin Yount and Paul Molitor. Yount mentioned Suplizio during his induction speech at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

Suplizio was a highly-touted Yankees prospect in the 1950s and was considered a potential replacement for Mickey Mantle when he suffered a compound fracture to his right wrist that didn't completely heal.

After his playing career ended, Suplizio went into business in Grand Junction, Colo., and eventually coached for the Angels, Brewers, Cardinals and Mariners. He also helped bring the Alpine Bank Junior College World Series to Grand Junction in 1959 and served as chairman of the event for 33 years.
Drew Olson Special to

Host of “The Drew Olson Show,” which airs 1-3 p.m. weekdays on The Big 902. Sidekick on “The Mike Heller Show,” airing weekdays on The Big 920 and a statewide network including stations in Madison, Appleton and Wausau. Co-author of Bill Schroeder’s “If These Walls Could Talk: Milwaukee Brewers” on Triumph Books. Co-host of “Big 12 Sports Saturday,” which airs Saturdays during football season on WISN-12. Former senior editor at Former reporter at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.