Picked up the game of baseball in his home state of Illinois as a youth, before moving to Akron at age 14. After a couple of years in the youth leagues here, John became a "valuable" addition to the outstanding Sacred Heart and Atlantic Foundry teams during the 1930's. A strong right-handed pitcher with a tremendous "drop ball," John led the Heart and Foundry teams to five straight City titles and two State titles. In 1935 and 1936 he was named the City League's MVP Pitcher, and in the 1936 National Tournament in Wichita, Kansas, he was honored as the tourney's MVP. John finished his career by giving the pro circuit a crack...joining the Tigers organization and playing for Charleston; Gadsden, Alabama; and ended his pitching days with Knoxville in the Southern League.