1976 in baseball


1976 in baseball

Year in baseball
this year = 1976

Champions

Major League Baseball

*World Series: Cincinnati Reds over New York Yankees (4-0); Johnny Bench, MVP4TeamBracket | RD1=League Championship Series
ABC | RD2=World Series
NBC

RD1-seed1=| RD1-seed2=| RD1-seed3=| RD1-seed4=

RD1-seed1=East | RD1-team1=New York Yankees
RD1-seed2=West | RD1-team2=Kansas City Royals
RD1-score1=3 | RD1-score2=2

RD1-seed3=East | RD1-team3=Philadelphia Phillies
RD1-seed4=West | RD1-team4=Cincinnati Reds
RD1-score3=0 | RD1-score4=3

RD2-seed1=AL | RD2-team1=New York Yankees
RD2-seed2=NL | RD2-team2=Cincinnati Reds
RD2-score1=0 | RD2-score2=4

*All-Star Game, July 13 at Veterans Stadium: National League, 7-1; George Foster, MVP

Other champions

*Caribbean World Series: Naranjeros de Hermosillo (Mexico)
*College World Series: Arizona
*Japan Series: Hankyu Braves over Yomiuri Giants (4-3)
*Little League World Series: Chofu, Tokyo, Japan

Awards and honors

*Most Valuable Player
**Thurman Munson, New York Yankees, C (AL)
**Joe Morgan, Cincinnati Reds, 2B (NL)
*Cy Young Award
**Jim Palmer, Baltimore Orioles (AL)
**Randy Jones, San Diego Padres (NL)
*Rookie of the Year
**Mark Fidrych, Detroit Tigers, P (AL)
**Butch Metzger, San Diego Padres, P and Pat Zachry, Cincinnati Reds, P (NL)

tatistical Leaders

Events

January-March

*January 14 - Ted Turner completes the purchase of 100 percent of the Atlanta Braves.

*January 2 - Pitchers Robin Roberts and Bob Lemon are voted into the Hall of Fame by the Baseball Writers Association of America.

*February 3 - The Special Veterans Committee selects players Roger Connor and Freddie Lindstrom, and umpire Cal Hubbard, for the Hall of Fame. Hubbard becomes the first man elected to both the Pro Football and Baseball Halls of Fame.

*February 9 - Oscar Charleston is selected for the Hall of Fame by the Special Committee on the Negro Leagues.

*February 17 - Mike Scott of Pepperdine pitches a perfect game against California Lutheran University. He will be selected in the 2nd round of the June draft.

*March 20 - Leo Durocher, hired to manage Japan's Yokohama Taiyō Whales of the Central League, is sick with hepatitis and asks for a five-week delay in reporting. Durocher receives a telegram from the Whales stating: "Since the championship starts in 20 days, it's better if you stay home and take care of yourself for the remainder of the season."

*March 26 - The American League approves the purchase of the new Toronto franchise by the LaBatt's Brewing Company for $7 million.

April-June

*April 2 - The Oakland Athletics trade prospective free agents Reggie Jackson and Ken Holtzman, together with a minor league pitcher, to the Orioles for outfielder Don Baylor and pitchers Mike Torrez and Paul Mitchell.

*April 9 - In a classic Opening Day pitchers' duel between future Hall of Famers Jim Palmer of the Baltimore Orioles and Ferguson Jenkins of the Boston Red Sox, who would combine for 552 major league wins, Palmer prevails 1–0.

*April 10 - The Atlanta Braves sign free agent pitcher Andy Messersmith to a "lifetime contract" worth $1 million.

*April 14 - At Wrigley Field, Dave Kingman of the New York Mets launches a home run estimated at 550 feet that plunks a house some 530 feet from home plate, but the Chicago Cubs survive to win 6–5.

*April 15 - Newly remodeled Yankee Stadium is jammed with 52,613 fans for Opening Day ceremonies. The 1923 Yankees are honored, and Bob Shawkey, winner of the 1923 Stadium opener, throws out the first ball. The Yankees beat the Minnesota Twins 11–4 on 14 hits, but the only home run is hit by Minnesota's Dan Ford.

*April 17 - With the wind blowing out at Wrigley Field, Mike Schmidt leads the Philadelphia Phillies assault with a single, four consecutive home runs, and eight RBI to overcome a 12–1 deficit after three innings and beat the Chicago Cubs in 10 innings, 18–16.

*April 21 - At Wrigley Field, Tim Foli of the Montreal Expos hits for the cycle, but it takes him two days to do it. Foli has a single, double and triple against the Cubs, but with the Expos ahead 11–3, the game is suspended on account of darkness. When play resumes the next day, Foli will add a home run in the 8th inning.

*April 24 - Bert Campaneris of the Oakland Athletics steals five bases in an 8–7 win over the Cleveland Indians.

*April 25:
**Chicago Cubs outfielder Rick Monday snatches an American flag from two fans who are about to set it on fire in the outfield during a game at Dodger Stadium. The Dodgers win 5–4 in 10 innings. The next day, the Illinois legislature unanimously approves May 4th as "Rick Monday Day".
**The Atlanta Braves top the Philadelphia Phillies 3–2, as Darrell Evans draws a walk in his 13th consecutive game to set a new National League record. He'll draw passes in two more games, until April 27, before being shut out. Evans has 19 walks in the 15 games.

*May 1 - In the first game of a double-header, Mike Schmidt hits a home-run, number 12 for the season. It was the Phillies 15th game of the season, setting a record for the most homers in a teams first 15 games.

*May 15 - Mark Fidrych wins his first major league start, a complete game two-hit 2–1 victory over the Cleveland Indians. Fidrych holds the Indians hitless for six innings, talks to the ball, and tamps down the mound before toeing the rubber each inning.

*May 19 - At Detroit, Carl Yastrzemski hits three home runs and goes 4-for-4 as the Boston Red Sox win 9–2 over the host Detroit Tigers. Yesterday, Yaz passed Ted Williams as having played the most games for Boston.

*May 29 - The only home run hit by pitcher Joe Niekro in his 22-year career comes at the expense of brother Phil Niekro as the Houston Astros tie the Atlanta Braves in the seventh inning, then win 4–3.

*June 4 - Tom Seaver and the New York Mets defeat the Dodgers 11-0 in Los Angeles on a three home run performance by Dave Kingman. Following the game, Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda is asked, "What's your opinion of Kingman's performance?" during his post-game interview. Lasorda goes off in a now famous obscenity laced tirade.

*June 22 - Randy Jones pitches the San Diego Padres to a 4–2 win over the San Francisco Giants, and ties Christy Mathewson's 63-year-old National League record by going 68 innings without a base on balls. Jones receives a standing ovation from the home crowd after striking out Darrell Evans to end the seventh inning. His streak ends when he walks Marc Hill leading off the 8th.

*June 25 - The Texas Rangers' Toby Harrah becomes the only shortstop in major league history to go through an entire doubleheader without a fielding chance. At bat, Harrah makes up for the inactivity, collecting six hits including a grand slam in the opener, and another home run in game 2. The Rangers beat the Chicago White Sox in the first game 8–4, but lose the nightcap 14–9.

*June 28 - With a national television audience looking on, Detroit's Mark Fidrych, known as "the Bird", beats the New York Yankees 5-1 at Tiger Stadium.

July-September

*July 8 - At Wrigley Field, Randy Jones wins his 16th game of the year for the San Diego Padres, a National League record for wins at the All-Star break. He beats the Chicago Cubs 6–3. In the second half of the season, Jones will lose seven games by one run, two of them by 1–0 scores.

*July 9 - In Montreal, the Houston Astros' Larry Dierker no-hits the host Montreal Expos, 6–0. He strikes out eight batters, including the first two in the ninth inning. Dierker had previously thrown two one-hitters.

*July 13 - The National League emerges victorious in the annual All-Star Game by a score of 7–1. George Foster, one of seven Cincinnati Reds position players on the squad, hits a home run with three RBI, and is named the MVP. Rookie pitcher Mark Fidrych gives up two runs and takes the loss. It is the NL's 13th win over the American League in the last 14 games.

*July 20 - Hank Aaron hits the 755th and last home run of his career, connecting off Dick Drago of the California Angels.

*July 23 - In a game against the Taiyō Whales, Sadaharu Oh of the Yomiuri Giants hits his 700th home run, the first player in Nippon Professional Baseball to do so.

*July 28 - Blue Moon Odom and Francisco Barrios combine on a no-hitter as the Chicago White Sox top the Oakland Athletics 2–1. For Odom, this is his last major league victory.

*August 8 - The first game of today's Royals-White Sox double header at Comiskey Park sees the White Sox appear on the field in shorts. The Sox return to long pants for the second game, after stealing five bases and defeating the Royals, 5-2.

*August 9 - John Candelaria became the first Pirates pitcher in 69 years to throw a no-hitter in Pittsburgh by blanking the Los Angeles Dodgers 2-0. Candelaria's no-hitter came at Three Rivers Stadium. No Pirate ever threw a no-hitter at Forbes Field.

*September 6 - Dodgers catcher Steve Yeager is seriously injured when the jagged end of a broken bat strikes him in the throat while he is waiting in the on-deck circle.

*September 11 - Orestes "Minnie" Miñoso comes out of his twelve year retirement. Playing for the White Sox, he goes 0-for-3 against Frank Tanana. The next day, he will single, becoming the oldest player to hit safely in a Major League game.

*September 18 - Player-Manager Frank Robinson of the Cleveland Indians inserts himself into the lineup as a pinch hitter in the eight inning of a game agasint the Baltimore Orioles. He singles in what will be his final at-bat as a player. His influence as a manager and executive will continue for decades to come.

*September 21 - In Los Angeles, the Cincinnati Reds clinch the National League West title with a 9-1 pasting of the Dodgers.

*September 26 - In the last big league games at Montreal's Jarry Park, the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Montreal Expos 4-1 in the first game of a doubleheader to clinch the National League East title. Philly takes the nightcap, 2-1. Following the 2nd game, Dick Allen jumps the team in protest of the fact that veteran Tony Taylor is not listed on the post-season roster.

*September 28 - The Dodgers' Walter Alston, after 23 seasons and 2,040 victories, steps down as manager. Third base coach Tommy Lasorda is promoted to the post.

*September 29 - John Montefusco of the San Francisco Giants no-hits the Atlanta Braves 9-0 at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium.

October-December

*October 3:
**George Brett edges Kansas City Royals teammate Hal McRae for the American League batting title, .333 to .332, when his blooper drops in front of Minnesota Twins outfielder Steve Brye and skips over his head for an inside-the-park home run. McRae believes the misplay is deliberate, and charges the Twins with racism.
**The Chicago Cubs' Bill Madlock wrests the National League batting crown from Ken Griffey by collecting four singles in an 11-1 win over the Atlanta Braves. The hits raise Madlock from .333 to .339, one point ahead of the idle Griffey, who belatedly joins the Reds 8-2 win over the Expos and goes 0-for-2, dipping his average to .336.
**Hank Aaron singles in his last major league at bat and drives in his 2,297th run as the sixth-place Milwaukee Brewers lose to the Detroit Tigers, 5-2.

*October 7 - Judge Roy Hofheinz sells the Houston Astros to General Electric and Ford Motor Credit Companies.

*October 11 - In the last of the eighth inning, leading the Hanshin Tigers 4-1 with two out and a full count, Sadaharu Oh hits his 715th home run to pass Babe Ruth's mark. He finishes the season with 716 HRs and takes aim at Hank Aaron's record.

*October 14 - In Game 5 of the American League Championship Series, the New York Yankees take a 6-3 lead before Kansas City's George Brett connects for a 3-run home run. In the bottom of the 9th, New York's Chris Chambliss smashes the first pitch off Kansas City's Mark Littell into the right field stands for a 7-6 win, and the Yankees' first World Series appearance since 1964.

*October 21 - In the World Series, the Cincinnati Reds beat the New York Yankees 7-2, completing a four-game sweep. Series MVP Johnny Bench has two home runs and five RBI in the Series, and demolishes the Yankees with .533 hitting. Opposing catcher Thurman Munson had six straight singles to tie a World Series mark. The Reds become the first team since the 1969 playoff expansion to go through an entire postseason without a defeat. It is the last World Series to end in a sweep until 1989.

*November 5 - New American League franchises in Seattle and Toronto fill up their rosters by selecting 30 players apiece from unprotected players on other AL rosters. Outfielder Ruppert Jones (Seattle) and infielder Bob Bailor (Toronto) are the first choices.

*November 9 - The Oakland Athletics release Billy Williams, ending his career with 2,711 hits, 426 home runs, 1,475 RBI and a .290 average.

*November 29 - Free agent Reggie Jackson signs with the New York Yankees for $3.5 million.

*December 6 - The Boston Red Sox trade Cecil Cooper to the Milwaukee Brewers for George Scott and Bernie Carbo.

*December 9 - The Texas Rangers trade Jeff Burroughs to the Atlanta Braves for five players and an estimated $250,000.

Movies

*"The Bad News Bears"
*"The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars & Motor Kings"

Births

January-March

*January 4 - Ted Lilly
*January 7 - Éric Gagné
*January 7 - Alfonso Soriano
*January 8 - Carl Pavano
*January 10 - Adam Kennedy
*January 22 - Jimmy Anderson
*January 23 - Brandon Duckworth
*February 8 - Jim Parque
*February 8 - Adam Piatt
*February 9 - Vladimir Guerrero
*February 10 - Lance Berkman
*February 16 - Eric Byrnes
*February 17 - Scott Williamson
*February 23 - Scott Elarton
*February 29 - Terrence Long
*March 1 - Ramón Castro
*March 5 - Paul Konerko
*March 8 - Juan Encarnación
*March 8 - Ryan Freel
*March 16 - Abraham Núñez
*March 17 - Scott Downs
*March 18 - Corky Miller
*March 18 - Tomokazu Ohka
*March 18 - Scott Podsednik
*March 29 - Kevin Nicholson

April-June

*April 5 - Ryan Drese
*April 11 - Kelvim Escobar
*April 14 - Kyle Farnsworth
*April 29 - Erasmo Ramirez
*May 4 - Ben Grieve
*May 4 - Jason Michaels
*May 6 - Earl Snyder
*May 15 - Eric DuBose
*May 15 - Tyler Walker
*May 17 - José Guillén
*May 20 - Ramón Hernández
*May 21 - Travis Harper
*May 24 - Jason Grabowski
*May 25 - Miguel Tejada
*May 29 - Jerry Hairston, Jr.
*June 4 - J.C. Romero
*June 8 - Kenji Johjima
*June 19 - Dustan Mohr
*June 19 - Alex Prieto
*June 20 - Carlos Lee
*June 20 - Rob Mackowiak
*June 27 - Johnny Estrada
*June 27 - Chris Woodward

July-September

*July 24 - Nate Bump
*July 25 - Javier Vázquez
*August 3 - Troy Glaus
*August 5 - Bobby Kielty
*August 11 - Bubba Crosby
*August 12 - Lew Ford
*August 21 - Ramón Vázquez
*August 22 - Jeff Weaver
*August 22 - Randy Wolf
*August 26 - Geoff Geary
*August 26 - Alex Sánchez
*August 30 - Mike Koplove
*September 4 - Ron Calloway
*September 6 - Mike Nakamura
*September 13 - Wade Miller
*September 15 - Matt Thornton
*September 24 - Ben Broussard
*September 27 - Jason Phillips
*September 29 - Calvin Pickering

October-December

*October 2 - Víctor Santos
*October 10 - Pat Burrell
*October 14 - Henry Mateo
*October 18 - Michael Tejera
*October 19 - Michael Young
*October 22 - Michael Barrett
*October 23 - David Riske
*November 2 - Sidney Ponson
*November 5 - Alex Herrera
*November 5 - Liu Rodríguez
*November 24 - Mike Edwards
*November 26 - Brian Schneider
*November 28 - Adam Bernero
*November 30 - Craig Wilson
*December 13 - Josh Fogg
*December 15 - Aaron Miles
*December 16 - Matt Kinney
*December 20 - Aubrey Huff
*December 22 - Jason Lane
*December 23 - Brad Lidge
*December 30 - A.J. Pierzynski

Deaths

January-March

*January 16 - Chick Autry, 91, utility first baseman/outfielder for the Cincinnati Reds and Boston Doves in the late 1900s
*February 11 - Johnny Miljus, 80, pitcher for the Pittsburgh Rebels, Brooklyn Robins, Pittsburgh Pirates, and Cleveland Indians between 1915 and 1929
*February 16 - Eusebio González, 83, Cuban shortstop for the 1918 Boston Red Sox
*March 11 - Larry Gardner, 89, third baseman for three Red Sox champions who batted .300 five times; longtime coach at University of Vermont
*March 18 - Paul Maloy, 83, pitcher for the 1913 Boston Red Sox
*March 23 - Walter Murphy, 65, pitcher for the 1931 Boston Red Sox

April-June

*April 15 - George Scales, 75, second baseman in the Negro Leagues, also a manager in the Puerto Rican winter league
*April 26 - Alex Ferguson, 79, pitcher for the Yankees, Red Sox, Senators, Phillies and Robins from 1918 to 1929
*April 27 - Ed Durham, 72, pitcher for the Boston Red Sox and Chicago White Sox between 1929 and 1933
*May 2 - Dan Bankhead, 55, first black pitcher in major league history (Brooklyn Dodgers, 1947, 1950-51); also homered in first major league at-bat
*May 3 - Ernie Nevers, 73, who excelled in several sports, including American football, basketball and baseball
*May 30 - Max Carey, 86, Hall of Fame center fielder, mainly with the Pittsburgh Pirates, who led NL in steals ten times, holding league career record of 738 until 1974; set NL records for career games, putouts, chances and double plays in outfield, and batted .458 in 1925 World Series
*June 11 - Jim Konstanty, 59, All-Star pitcher who became the first reliever to win the MVP award, with the 1950 "Whiz Kid" Phillies
*June 15 - Jimmy Dykes, 79, All-Star third baseman for the Athletics and White Sox who went on to become the winningest manager in White Sox history; also managed five other teams
*June 16 - George Dickey, 60, catcher for the Boston Red Sox and Chicago White Sox between 1935 and 1947
*June 23 - Lon Warneke, 67, 5-time All-Star pitcher had three 20-win seasons for Cubs, led NL in wins and ERA in 1932; later an NL umpire for seven years
*June 30 - Firpo Marberry, 77, pitcher for the Washington Senators who established single-season and career records for both saves and relief appearances, led majors in saves a record five times; also 94-52 as a starter

July-September

*July 9 - Tom Yawkey, 73, owner and president of the Boston Red Sox since 1933, and vice president of the American League from 1956 to 1973
*July 21 - Earle Combs, 77, Hall of Fame center fielder for the New York Yankees who batted .325 lifetime and led the AL in triples three times; batting leadoff, he had eight seasons of 100 runs, and batted .350 over four World Series
*August 3 - Homer Ezzell, 80, third baseman for the St. Louis Browns and Boston Red Sox between 1923 and 1925
*August 15 - Jim Henry, 66, pitched from 1936 through 1939 for the Boston Red Sox and Philadelphia Phillies
*September 1 - Mike Meola, 70, pitcher for the Boston Red Sox and St. Louis Browns between 1933 and 1936, who posted one of the best seasons ever for a pitcher in minor league history going 20-5 with 2.90 ERA for the PCL Los Angeles Angels in 1934
*September 10 - Blackie Carter, 73, outfielder for the New York Giants from 1925 to 1926
*September 25 - Red Faber, 88, Hall of Fame pitcher who played his entire 20-year career with the Chicago White Sox, winning 254 games and leading AL in ERA twice; his four 20-win seasons included a 25-win campaign for the scandal-decimated 1921 team, which finished 62-92
*September 26 - Rip Russell, 61, first baseman/outfielder, and a competent replacement for the Cubs and Red Sox in the 1940s

October-December

*October 9 - Bob Moose, 29, pitcher for the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1967-76, who threw a no-hitter in the 1969 season against the Mets, died in an automobile accident on his birthday date
*October 20 - Freddie Muller, 65, infielder who played from 1933 to 1934 for the Boston Red Sox
*November 2 - Regis Leheny, 68, pitcher for the 1932 Boston Red Sox
*November 2 - Dee Miles, 67, outfielder who played from 1935 to 1943 for the Washington Senators, Philadelphia Athletics and Boston Red Sox
*November 19 - Frank Kellert, 52, first baseman for the St. Louis Browns, Baltimore Orioles, Brooklyn Dodgers and Chicago Cubs from 1953 to 1956
*December 1 - George Earnshaw, 76, pitcher who had three 20-win seasons for 1929-30-31 AL champion Athletics; later a scout and coach
*December 2 - Danny Murtaugh, 59, manager who in four stints with the Pittsburgh Pirates won two World Series (1960, 1971) and three division titles; led NL in steals as rookie in 1941
*December 7 - Duke Maas, 47, pitcher who won 45 games for the Tigers, Athletics and Yankees
*December 9 - Wes Ferrell, 68, All-Star pitcher who had six 20-win seasons for the Indians and Red Sox, 193 career wins included a no-hitter; also a career .280 hitter, and caught by brother Rick for five seasons
*December 10 - Danny Thompson, 29, infielder, mainly with the Minnesota Twins, who played four seasons after being diagnosed with leukemia
*December 26 - Walt Lynch, 79, catcher for the 1922 Boston Red Sox


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