Year In Review : 1982 American League

O ff the field...

The Vietnam Veterans' War memorial was dedicated in Washington, bearing 58,000 names of US servicemen and women who were killed during one of America's most unpopular wars. "The Wall" was designed by Maya Ying Lin, an architecture student at Yale University and has become one of the most revered and appreciated public memorials in the United States.

Princess Grace of Monaco, a former Hollywood actress, was killed in a terrible accident after her car careened off the winding roads of France leading to Monaco. An investigation later revealed that she had suffered a mild stroke, which caused her to lose control of her vehicle.

Barney B. Clark, a sixty-one-year-old retired dentist, had his diseased heart replaced by the "Jarvick 7" the world's first permanent artificial heart. Dr. William C. DeVries at the University of Utah Medical Center in Salt Lake City performed the successful transplant operation and Clark survived for one-hundred twelve days before finally succumbing to complications caused by the implant.

I n the American League...

During an inter-league exhibition game between the Oakland Athletics and the San Diego Padres, A's pitcher Steve McCatty stepped up to the plate swinging a children's toy bat on the instructions of manager Billy Martin, who was upset that his club was not allowed to use a DH in spring training games at National League ballparks. Jim Quick, the home plate umpire, refused to allow the 15" bat and McCatty was called out on three strikes.

The largest crowd ever to see a baseball game in the state of Minnesota (52,279) turned out for the inaugural game at the brand-new indoor Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome. The Seattle Mariners put a damper on the festivities though after beating the Twins 11-7.

The Detroit Tigers' Larry Herndon hit three home runs in an 11-9 win over the Oakland Athletics (following a round-tripper in his final at bat against the Minnesota Twins) to become the fourteenth player in Major League history to hit four home runs in consecutive plate appearances.

I n the National League...

On Saturday, July 31st, Philadelphia Phillies second baseman Manny Trillo misplayed a Bill Buckner grounder in the seventh during a 2-0 win over the Chicago Cubs. The error ended Trillo's "e-free" streak at eighty-nine games and four-hundred seventy-nine consecutive chances stopping him just two games short of Joe Morgan's record of ninety-one.

On August 4th, Joel Youngblood became the first Major League player to play for two different teams in two different cities on the same day. The New York Mets outfielder started the afternoon by going one-for-two off the Cubs' Fergie Jenkins at Wrigley Field. Following the contest he was traded to the Montreal Expos and flew to Philadelphia in time to enter the sixth inning of a night game at Veterans Stadium. The well-traveled outfielder then went one-for-one off Steve Carlton, another Hall of Fame inductee, in a 5-4 loss.

Veteran first baseman Willie Stargell's number eight (8) was officially retired by the Pittsburgh Pirates on September 6th, better known as "Willie Stargell Day" at Three Rivers Stadium. "Pops" twice led the National League in home runs, with a career high forty-eight in 1971 and his four-hundred seventy-five home runs were fifteenth all-time when he retired following the season. After his playing career, he went on to coach for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1985, and the Atlanta Braves from 1986-88.

A round the league...

Hank Aaron and Frank Robinson became the twelfth and thirteenth players elected to the Hall of Fame by the BBWAA in their first year of eligibility. Aaron fell just nine votes shy of becoming the first-ever unanimous selection and his 97.8 election percentage was second only to Ty Cobb's 98.2 percent in the Hall's 1936 inaugural election.

Thirty-seven year-old Steve Carlton won the National League Cy Young Award for the fourth time, a record unmatched by any pitcher in the history of the Major Leagues through this date. The Philadelphia Phillies veteran lefthander led the National League in wins (twenty-three), innings (295.2), strikeouts (two-hundred eighty-six), and shutouts (six). He was a previous winner in 1972, 1977, as well as 1980.

An up-and-coming shortstop / third baseman named Cal Ripken, Jr. finished his debut season with a .264 average as well as twenty-eight home runs for the Baltimore Orioles and was named American League Rookie of the Year.

At a November Major League owners meeting in Chicago, members voted not to renew Commissioner Bowie Kuhn's contract, which was due to expire in August. The American League owners voted in favor of Kuhn 11-3 and the National League 7-5, but the eighteen votes left him two shy of the three-fourths majority required for reelection.

"Maybe they made me captain because I've been here so long. If I'm supposed to be captain by example, then I'll be a terrible captain." - Thurman Munson
1982 American League Player Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Base on Balls

Oakland

116

Batting Average

Kansas City

.332

Doubles

Kansas City

46

Milwaukee

Hits

Milwaukee

210

Home Runs

California

39

Milwaukee

On Base Percentage

Boston

.403

RBI

Kansas City

133

Runs

Milwaukee

136

Slugging Average

Milwaukee

.578

Stolen Bases

Oakland

Total Bases

Milwaukee

367

Triples

Kansas City

15

1982 American League Pitcher Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Complete Games

Toronto

19

ERA

Cleveland

2.96

Games

Seattle

78

Saves

Kansas City

35

Shutouts

Toronto

5

Strikeouts

Seattle

209

Winning Percentage

Milwaukee

.750

Wins

Chicago

19

1982 American League

Team Standings

Milwaukee Brewers

95 67 .586 0

Baltimore Orioles

94 68 .580 1

Boston Red Sox

89 73 .549 6

Detroit Tigers

83 79 .512 12

New York Yankees

79 83 .488 16

Toronto Blue Jays

78 84 .481 17

Cleveland Indians

78 84 .481 17

California Angels

93 69 .574 0

Kansas City Royals

90 72 .556 3

Chicago White Sox

87 75 .537 6

Seattle Mariners

76 86 .469 17

Oakland Athletics

68 94 .420 25

Texas Rangers

64 98 .395 29

Minnesota Twins

60 102 .370 33

1982 American League Team Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Base on Balls

Cleveland

651

Batting Average

Kansas City

.285

Doubles

Kansas City

295

Hits

Kansas City

1,603

Home Runs

Milwaukee

216

On Base Percentage

California

.350

Runs

Milwaukee

891

Slugging Average

Milwaukee

.455

Stolen Bases

Oakland

232

Triples

Kansas City

58

1982 American League Team Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Complete Games

Detroit

45

ERA

Detroit

3.80

Fewest Hits Allowed

Detroit

1,371

Fewest Home Runs Allowed

Chicago

99

Fewest Walks Allowed

Chicago

460

Saves

Milwaukee

47

Shutouts

Toronto

13

Strikeouts

Seattle

1,002



On April 6, 1982, the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome opened and the Twins lost 11-7 to the Mariners. The ballpark was the first and only air-supported dome in baseball history and required 250,000 cubic feet of air pressure per minute to remain inflated.

On May 6, 1982, Gaylord Perry of Seattle beat New York 7-3 in the Kingdome. The victory made him the twenty-first pitcher in Major League history to join the 300 Wins Club and after the game President Reagan said to Perry, "I just know it's an ugly rumor that you and I are the only people alive who saw Abner Doubleday throw the first pitch out."

On August 21, 1982, Rollie Fingers pitched against the Mariners and was credited with a save. This particular save made Fingers the first pitcher in Major League history to have three-hundred career saves.

Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac31m
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