1979 in baseball

1979 in baseball

Year in baseball
this year = 1979


Major League Baseball

*World Series: Pittsburgh Pirates over Baltimore Orioles (4-3); Willie Stargell, MVP

4TeamBracket | RD1=League Championship Series
NBC | RD2=World Series
RD1-seed1=| RD1-seed2=| RD1-seed3=| RD1-seed4=
RD1-seed1=East | RD1-team1=Baltimore Orioles
RD1-seed2=West | RD1-team2=California Angels
RD1-score1=3 | RD1-score2=1
RD1-seed3=East | RD1-team3=Pittsburgh Pirates
RD1-seed4=West | RD1-team4=Cincinnati Reds
RD1-score3=3 | RD1-score4=0
RD2-seed1=AL | RD2-team1=Baltimore Orioles
RD2-seed2=NL | RD2-team2=Pittsburgh Pirates
RD2-score1=3 | RD2-score2=4

*American League Championship Series MVP: None.
*National League Championship Series MVP: Willie Stargell
*All-Star Game, July 17 at the Kingdome: National League, 7-6; Dave Parker, MVP

Other champions

*Caribbean World Series: Navegantes del Magallanes (Venezuela)
*College World Series: Cal State-Fullerton
*Japan Series: Hiroshima Toyo Carp over Kintetsu Buffaloes (4-3)
*Little League World Series: Pu-Tzu Town, Hsien, Taiwan
*Cuban National Series: Sancti Spíritus

Awards and honors

*Most Valuable Player
**Don Baylor, California Angels, OF (AL)
**Willie Stargell, Pittsburgh Pirates, 1B and Keith Hernandez, St. Louis Cardinals, 1B (NL)
*Cy Young Award
**Mike Flanagan, Baltimore Orioles (AL)
**Bruce Sutter, Chicago Cubs (NL)
*Rookie of the Year
**John Castino, Minnesota Twins, 3B and Alfredo Griffin, Toronto Blue Jays, SS (AL)
**Rick Sutcliffe, Los Angeles Dodgers, P (NL)

MLB Statistical Leaders

Major League Baseball final standings


*January 23 - Willie Mays receives 409 of 432 votes in the Baseball Writers Association of America election to earn enshrinement in the Hall of Fame.

*February 3 - The Minnesota Twins trade Rod Carew to the California Angels for Ken Landreaux, Dave Engle, Paul Hartzell and Brad Havens. His first season with the Angels, he helps his new team reach the post season for the first time, batting over .300 for the next five seasons, and being selected for the next six American League All-Star Game teams.

*March 7 - The Special Veterans Committee selects Warren Giles and Hack Wilson for the Hall of Fame.

*April 7 - In the earliest no-hitter in major league history, the Houston Astros' Ken Forsch shuts down the Atlanta Braves 6-0. Together with Bob Forsch, who hurled a no-hitter in 1978, the brothers become the first to pitch no-hit games.

*May 17 - Dave Kingman of the Cubs hits three home runs and Mike Schmidt of the Phillies hits two, the second of which proves to be the game winner in the tenth inning, as the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Chicago Cubs, 23-22 at Wrigley Field. Bill Buckner had a grand slam and seven RBIs for Chicago. The game included a then Major League record 11 home runs and 50 hits.

*May 28 - Texas Rangers first baseman Mike Jorgensen was hit in the head by a pitch from Boston Red Sox pitcher Andy Hassler. Dave Roberts came into the game to pinch run for Jorgensen. Pat Putnam took over as the Rangers' regular first baseman for the next month. Jorgensen pinch hit on May 31, but that's it. He didn't play again until July 1. After suffering headaches, it was discovered he had a small blood clot inside his head, which apparently caused a seizure, and could have resulted in his early demise.

*June 8 - The Kansas City Royals use their fourth overall pick to draft Dan Marino. In the seventeenth round, they select Stanford's John Elway. Neither player would sign with the Royals, though they would go on to record-breaking careers in the National Football League.

*June 12 - The Detroit Tigers hire Sparky Anderson as their new manager.

*June 24 - In a 5-1 loss to the Texas Rangers, Rickey Henderson debuts for the Oakland Athletics. He singles and doubles; the first of his over 3,000 career hits, and steals the first of his over 1,400 bases.

*July 12 - The Detroit Tigers win the first game of a scheduled doubleheader, 4-1, on Disco Demolition Night at Chicago's Comiskey Park. Thousands of young fans swarm onto the field between the games, damaging the field and causing mayhem throughout the stadium. The Chicago White Sox are forced to forfeit the second game.

*July 17 - The National League wins its eighth straight All-Star Game, 7–6, at Seattle. Lee Mazzilli hit a home run to tie the game in the 8th, and walks in the 9th to bring in the winning run. Dave Parker, with two outstanding throws, is named the MVP, and Pete Rose plays a record five All-Star positions. The Boston Red Sox provide the starting outfield for the American League with Carl Yastrzemski, Jim Rice and Fred Lynn.

*July 24 - The Boston Red Sox's Carl Yastrzemski hits his 400th home run off Oakland Athletics pitcher Mike Morgan in the 7th inning of the Red Sox's 7-3 win over the Athletics at Boston's Fenway Park.

*August 2 - The Chicago White Sox announce that Don Kessinger has been fired as manager, and that he will be replaced by rookie manager Tony La Russa.

*August 3 - Over 51,000 mourners attend a memorial service for New York Yankees captain Thurman Munson at Yankee Stadium. Munson had been killed the day before in a plane crash.

*August 5 - Fred Lynn hits 100th career home run helping Boston Red Sox beat Milwaukee Brewers 7-2.

*August 6 - The entire New York Yankee team flies to Canton, Ohio for captain Thurman Munson's funeral. Hours later, the team returns to New York City and defeats the Baltimore Orioles 5-4 at Yankee Stadium, before a national viewing audience on ABC’s "Monday Night Baseball". Bobby Murcer, one of Munson’s best friends, drives in all five Yankee runs with a three-run home run in the seventh inning and a two-run single in the bottom of the ninth.

*August 13 - The St. Louis Cardinals' Lou Brock slashes his 3,000th hit off the hand of Chicago Cubs pitcher Dennis Lamp in a 3-2 Cardinals win at Busch Memorial Stadium.

*September 12 - Carl Yastrzemski records his 3000th career hit with a single off of New York Yankees' pitcher Jim Beattie.

*September 15 - As part of a 10-2 win over the Baltimore Orioles, the Red Sox's Bob Watson hits for the cycle. Having done it for the Houston Astros on June 24, 1977, he is the first player to do this in both leagues.

*September 17 - George Brett hits his 20th triple of the season. He is the first player since Willie Mays in 1957 in baseball to join the 20–20–20 club.

*September 23 - Lou Brock steals the 938th base of his career, breaking Billy Hamilton's all-time National League record. Brock's St. Louis Cardinals defeat the New York Mets 7-4 in ten innings.

*September 24 - Pete Rose collects his 200th hit of the season, giving him ten seasons with at least 200 hits. This breaks the record set by Ty Cobb.

*September 28 - Garry Templeton of the St. Louis Cardinals collects his 100th hit of the season while batting right-handed. Having already collected 100 hits while batting left-handed, Templeton is the first player in history to accomplish this. He had batted right-handed, exclusively, for the last week of the season to get the needed hits.

*October 17 - In Game Seven of the World Series, Willie Stargell hits his third home run of the Series to send the Pittsburgh Pirates to their third straight win over the Baltimore Orioles, to win the World Series Championship. Stargell wins Series MVP honors. The Pirates came back from a deficit of 3 games-to-1.

*November 13 - For the first time ever, there will be League co-MVPs as Keith Hernandez of the St. Louis Cardinals shares the National League Baseball Most Valuable Player Award with Willie Stargell of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Stargell is the oldest person to win this award (since broken by Barry Bonds in 2004. The Pirates have thus won (or shared) all four "Most Valuable Player" awards for the season (All-Star Game, National League Championship Series, World Series, and National League regular season). This is the first such sweep in Major League history (Stargell had won the awards for the NLCS, World Series, and National League regular season, while teammate Dave Parker won the All-Star Game award).


*"Bleacher Bums" (TV)



*January 3 - Rosman García
*January 5 - Rubén Quevedo
*January 21 - Byung-Hyun Kim
*January 23 - Juan Rincón
*January 29 - Lance Niekro
*February 9 - Akinori Iwamura
*February 15 - Luis Ugueto
*February 24 - Brian Esposito
*February 24 - Dennis Tankersley
*March 3 - Jorge Julio
*March 6 - Clint Barmes
*March 6 - Erik Bedard
*March 12 - Félix Escalona
*March 13 - Johan Santana
*March 16 - Hee Seop Choi
*March 20 - Wilfredo Rodríguez
*March 23 - Mark Buehrle
*March 27- Michael Cuddyer


*April 7 - Adrián Beltré
*April 12 - Jordan De Jong
*April 19 - Nick Gorneault
*April 23 - Carlos Silva
*May 1 - Brandon Claussen
*May 10 - Tony Alvarez
*May 20 - Jayson Werth
*May 23 - César Crespo
*May 24 - Joe Kennedy
*May 25 - Chris Young
*June 6 - Jeremy Affeldt
*June 8 - Pete Orr
*June 26 - Luis A. González


*July 13 - Kei Igawa
*July 19 - Rick Ankiel
*July 22 - Juan Uribe
*August 2 - Humberto Quintero
*August 10 - Dan Johnson
*August 13 - Corey Patterson
*August 19 - Rocky Cherry
*August 23 - Chris Roberson
*August 29 - Eduardo Villacis
*August 30 - Luis Rivas
*August 31 - Tim Raines, Jr.
*September 5 - Cliff Bartosh
*September 7 - Nathan Haynes
*September 19 - Lenny DiNardo
*September 27 - Jon Garland


*October 14 - Duaner Sánchez
*October 21 - Khalil Greene
*November 1 - Coco Crisp
*November 6 - Adam LaRoche
*November 9 - Adam Dunn
*November 11 - J.R. House
*November 19 - Ryan Howard
*November 24 - Horacio Ramírez
*November 28 - Mike Schultz
*November 29 - Francis Beltrán
*December 12 - Garrett Atkins
*December 15 - Kevin Cameron
*December 19 - Rafael Soriano


*February 7 - Warren Giles, 82, president of the National League from 1951 to 1969, and of the Cincinnati Reds from 1937 to 1951
*February 8 - Alex Gaston, 85, catcher for the New York Giants and Boston Red Sox between 1920 and 1929
*February 8 - Art Williams, 44, the first black umpire in the National League, working from 1972 to 1977 including the 1975 NLCS
*March 2 - Dale Alexander, 75, first baseman who batted .331 in five seasons with the Tigers and Red Sox, winning the 1932 batting title, before an injury ended his career; later a scout
*March 29 - Luke Easter, 63, first baseman in the Negro Leagues who had 100 RBI in each of his first two seasons with the Cleveland Indians
*April 3 - Harry Simpson, 63, outfielder and first baseman who led the AL in triples twice
*April 6 - Al Evans, 62, long time catcher for the Washington Senators, later a minor league manager
*April 6 - Rudy Kallio, 86, pitcher for the Detroit Tigers (1918-19) and Boston Red Sox (1925); later a coach for Triple-A Portland Beavers and scout for the Chicago Cubs
*April 18 - Lindsay Deal, 67, outfeilder for the 1939 Brooklyn Dodgers
*May 3 - Tom Jenkins, 81, outfielder for the Boston Red Sox, Philadelphia Athletics and St. Louis Browns in the early 1920s
*June 17 - Duffy Lewis, 91, left fielder for the Boston Red Sox who starred on three champions and mastered Fenway Park's sloping left field
*June 18 - Hal Trosky, 66, first baseman for the Indians who batted .302 lifetime and had six 100-RBI seasons
*July 22 - Amos Strunk, 90, a center fielder for the Philadelphia Athletics, Boston Red Sox and Chicago White Sox between 1908 through 1924 and a member of four World Series champion teams
*August 2 - Thurman Munson, 32, 7-time All-Star catcher for the New York Yankees since 1969 who batted .300 five times and won the 1976 MVP award; 1970 Rookie of the Year won three Gold Gloves and batted .357 in 30 postseason games
*August 9 - Walter O'Malley, 75, owner of the Dodgers franchise since 1950, during which time the team won four World Series titles; he moved the team from Brooklyn to Los Angeles and constructed Dodger Stadium
*September 4 - Turkey Stearnes, 78, center fielder in the Negro Leagues who led the Negro National League in home runs six times while batting .350
*October 22 - John Drebinger, 88, sportswriter for "The New York Times" for 41 years
*November 18 - Freddie Fitzsimmons, 78, knuckleball pitcher who won 217 games for the New York Giants and Brooklyn Dodgers
*December 4 - Bert Delmas, 68, infielder for the 1933 Brooklyn Dodgers
*December 15 - Stan Hack, 70, 5-time All-Star third baseman for the Chicago Cubs who batted .301 lifetime and posted a .394 career on-base percentage, the highest of any 20th-century third baseman; scored 100 runs seven times and led NL in hits and steals twice each

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