1973 World Series

The 1973 World Series matched the defending champions Oakland Athletics against the New York Mets; the A's won in seven games for their second of three consecutive World Series titles.

The Mets won the National League East division by 1½ games over the St. Louis Cardinals, then defeated the Cincinnati Reds, three games to two, in the National League Championship Series. The Athletics won the American League West division by six games over the Kansas City Royals, then defeated the Baltimore Orioles, three games to two, in the American League Championship Series.

This was the first World Series in which all weekday games started at night. The three weekday games the previous year were scheduled to be played at night, but a postponement of Game 3 eliminated the scheduled off day between Games 5 and 6, and Major League Baseball moved Game 5 on Friday to an afternoon start to allow the teams more travel time for the day game on Saturday.

This was the last World Series in which each team produced and sold its own game programs for its home games. Starting in 1974, Major League Baseball printed an official World Series program that was sold in both stadiums.

This was the third consecutive World Series, all seven games, in which the winning team scored fewer runs overall. The trend continued for the next seven-game series in 1975.

1973 World Series
1973 World Series
Team (Wins) Manager(s) Season
Oakland Athletics (4) Dick Williams 94–68, .580, GA: 6
New York Mets (3) Yogi Berra 82–79, .509, GA: ​1 12
DatesOctober 13–21
MVPReggie Jackson (Oakland)
UmpiresMarty Springstead (AL), Augie Donatelli (NL), Jerry Neudecker (AL), Paul Pryor (NL), Russ Goetz (AL), Harry Wendelstedt (NL)
Hall of FamersAthletics: Dick Williams (mgr.), Rollie Fingers, Catfish Hunter, Reggie Jackson.
Mets: Yogi Berra (mgr.), Willie Mays, Tom Seaver.
ALCSOakland A's over Baltimore Orioles (3–2)
NLCSNew York Mets over Cincinnati Reds (3–2)
Broadcast
TelevisionNBC
TV announcersCurt Gowdy, Monte Moore (Games 1–2, 6–7), Lindsey Nelson (Games 3–5) and Tony Kubek
RadioNBC
Radio announcersJim Simpson, Ralph Kiner (Games 1–2, 6–7) and Monte Moore (Games 3–5)
World Series

Background

New York Mets

The 1973 Mets' .509 season winning percentage is the lowest posted by any pennant winner in major league history. Injuries plagued the team throughout the season.

The team got off to a promising 4-0 start, and went .600 for the month of April. Before long, however, the team was soon beset with injuries and fell in standing, just as with their previous season. Stumbling through the summer in last place, the Mets got healthy and hot in September, ultimately winning the division with a mere 82 victories, marking the only time between 1970 and 1980 that neither their rival Philadelphia Phillies, nor the Pittsburgh Pirates, won the division.[1][2]

The final standings:

NL East W L Pct. GB Home Road
New York Mets 82 79 0.509 43–38 39–41
St. Louis Cardinals 81 81 0.500 43–38 38–43
Pittsburgh Pirates 80 82 0.494 41–40 39–42
Montreal Expos 79 83 0.488 43–38 36–45
Chicago Cubs 77 84 0.478 5 41–39 36–45
Philadelphia Phillies 71 91 0.438 11½ 38–43 33–48

At 82–79, the 1973 New York Mets had the worst record of any team ever to play in a World Series. They had only the ninth-best record in the 24-team major leagues, behind the Oakland A's, the Cincinnati Reds (who they beat in the National League Championship Series), the Baltimore Orioles (who were defeated by Oakland in the American League Championship Series), the Los Angeles Dodgers, the San Francisco Giants, the Boston Red Sox, the Detroit Tigers and the Kansas City Royals (none of whom made the postseason).

The 1973 New York Mets had the lowest winning percentage (now the second-lowest) of any postseason team (the San Diego Padres finished 82–80 in 2005). 1969 holdovers Bud Harrelson, Jerry Grote, Wayne Garrett, Tom Seaver, Jerry Koosman, and Tug McGraw joined forces with the Mets' farm-system alumni John Milner and Jon Matlack and trade-acquired Rusty Staub, Félix Millán, and Willie Mays, now 42 years old. Don Hahn and Mays alternated in center field, although they both batted right-handed.

The Mets' NLCS opponents, an imposing Cincinnati Reds squad that posted 99 victories during the regular season, were the favorite to return to the Series for a second consecutive year. (The Reds had fallen to the A's in the previous year's Series.) The 1973 NLCS went the full five games, and featured a now-famous brawl between Pete Rose and Mets shortstop Bud Harrelson. In the end, the Mets continued their improbable rise and bumped Rose and the rest of the mighty Reds from the playoffs.

Willie Mays recorded the final hit of his career in Game 2. In four World Series (1951, 1954, 1962, and 1973), Mays did not hit a single home run. He hit only one in the postseason, during the 1971 NLCS. Mays also fell in the outfield. He commented, "Growing old is just a helpless hurt."[3]

Oakland A's

Reggie Jackson October 1973.jpeg
1973 World Series MVP, Reggie Jackson (before game 3).

The Oakland A's secured the pennant by overcoming the Baltimore Orioles in the 1973 ALCS. The A's, defending champions, still possessed a formidable lineup headed by a healthy Reggie Jackson, (.293, 32 HR, 117 RBI, 22 stolen bases) who would be named league MVP in 1973. Jackson was joined in the lineup by standouts like third baseman Sal Bando, the fine defensive outfielder Joe Rudi, the speedy shortstop Bert Campaneris, and the A's catcher, 1972 World Series hero Gene Tenace. The pitching staff featured three 20-game winners, Ken Holtzman (21–13), Catfish Hunter (21–5), and Vida Blue (20–9), with Rollie Fingers (22 saves, 1.92) serving as the A's ace relief pitcher.

The A's offered entertainment both on and off the field in 1973; their brightly colored uniforms were the perfect metaphor for a team notable for clashing personalities. The stars engaged regularly in conflicts with each other and with owner Charles O. Finley.

With the designated hitter rule in effect for the first time in 1973, American League pitchers did not bat during the regular season. They were, however, expected to take their turn at the plate during each game of this Series. So it was that a man who had played no offensive role during the regular season came to make a key batting contribution for the A's during the Series. With some extra batting practice, A's pitcher Ken Holtzman would stroke a double that helped the A's to win Game 1 – and another double that helped them secure the deciding seventh game.

This Series was also notable for an incident where Finley attempted to "fire" second-baseman Mike Andrews for his errors in Game 2 (see below). Commissioner Bowie Kuhn would reinstate Andrews and fine Finley. Despite the hostility of the Oakland players toward the team's owner, the A's would be the first to repeat as World Champions since the 196162 New York Yankees. Oakland manager Dick Williams resigned after the Series was over, having had enough of owner Charles O. Finley's interference.

Oakland reliever Darold Knowles became the first ever pitcher to appear in every game of a seven-game World Series.

Summary

AL Oakland A's (4) vs. NL New York Mets (3)

Game Date Score Location Time Attendance 
1 October 13 New York Mets – 1, Oakland A's – 2 Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum 2:26 46,021[4] 
2 October 14 New York Mets – 10, Oakland A's – 7 (12 innings) Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum 4:13 49,151[5] 
3 October 16 Oakland A's – 3, New York Mets – 2 (11 innings) Shea Stadium 3:15 54,817[6] 
4 October 17 Oakland A's – 1, New York Mets – 6 Shea Stadium 2:41 54,817[7] 
5 October 18 Oakland A's – 0, New York Mets – 2 Shea Stadium 2:39 54,817[8] 
6 October 20 New York Mets – 1, Oakland A's – 3 Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum 2:07 49,333[9] 
7 October 21 New York Mets – 2, Oakland A's – 5 Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum 2:37 49,333[10]

Matchups

Game 1

Saturday, October 13, 1973 1:00 pm (PT) at Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum in Oakland, California
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
New York 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 7 2
Oakland 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 X 2 4 0
WP: Ken Holtzman (1–0)   LP: Jon Matlack (0–1)   Sv: Darold Knowles (1)

The Mets and A's opened the Series in Oakland with Jon Matlack and Ken Holtzman as the Game 1 starters (Matlack, with a 14–16 record during the 1973 season, is one of only four pitchers in history to start Game 1 of a World Series after a regular season losing record). Willie Mays started in place of the injured Rusty Staub and batted third in what turned out to be his final big league start.

In the third, pitcher Holtzman doubled and scored when Bert Campaneris hit a routine grounder that inexplicably bounced between Mets second baseman's Félix Millán's legs. Campaneris then stole second and scored on a single to right by Joe Rudi. The Mets came up with a run in the fourth on an RBI single by John Milner that scored Cleon Jones. Holtzman, Rollie Fingers, and Darold Knowles then shut the door on the Mets offense; Knowles earned the save.

Game 2

Sunday, October 14, 1973 1:30 pm (PT) at Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum in Oakland, California
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 R H E
New York 0 1 1 0 0 4 0 0 0 0 0 4 10 15 1
Oakland 2 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 2 0 0 1 7 13 5
WP: Tug McGraw (1–0)   LP: Rollie Fingers (0–1)   Sv: George Stone (1)
Home runs:
NYM: Cleon Jones (1), Wayne Garrett (1)
OAK: None

Game 2, eventually won by the Mets 10–7 in 12 innings, set a new record for the longest game in Series history at four hours and thirteen minutes. Along with blinding sunshine "turn{ing} every fly ball into adventure" (especially for a 42-year-old Willie Mays), Curt Gowdy described the contest in the official MLB 1973 Fall Classic highlight film as one of the "longest and weirdest games in World Series history".

Vida Blue opposed Jerry Koosman on the mound, but neither pitched well. In the first inning, the A's jumped on Koosman for two runs as the flyball adventures began. With one out, Joe Rudi reached second on a fly ball to left that Cleon Jones lost in the sun as he drifted to the warning track and the ball dropped in front of him. Rudi scored when the next batter, Sal Bando, hit a ball to right center that Don Hahn misplayed and allowed to bounce to the wall as Bando reached third. After Gene Tenace walked with two outs, Bando scored on a Jesús Alou double. The A's scored again in the second on Joe Rudi's single scoring the ubiquitous Bert Campaneris, who had tripled. The Mets got home runs from Cleon Jones and Wayne Garrett in the second and third innings, respectively.

The A's were still up 3–2 going into the sixth when things got even more strange. With one out and two on, Horacio Piña relieved Blue and promptly hit Jerry Grote with his first pitch, loading the bases. Don Hahn then drove home Cleon Jones with an infield hit and Bud Harrelson followed with an RBI single to put the Mets ahead 4–3. Jim Beauchamp then pinch-hit for reliever Harry Parker and hit a comebacker to the mound. Darold Knowles, who had relieved Pina, fielded the ball but lost his balance hurrying the throw home and threw wildly past Ray Fosse on the attempted force play. Two more Mets runs scored for a 6–3 lead.

Reggie Jackson had an RBI double in the seventh to make it 6–4. In the ninth, Deron Johnson, batting for Blue Moon Odom, lifted a fly ball to center that Willie Mays lost in the sun and fell down while chasing. Johnson reached second. Allan Lewis pinch-ran and scored on a single by Jackson after Sal Bando walked. Gene Tenace singled in Bando to tie it.

The Mets threatened in the 10th when Harrelson led off with a single. Tug McGraw bunted for a sacrifice and Rollie Fingers threw to second, but Harrelson ran with the pitch and was safe. McGraw was retired on the relay to first. Harrelson went to third when Garrett bounced a high grounder to Tenace at first and reached when Tenace's throw pulled Fingers off the bag. Harrelson then tagged and attempted to score on a Félix Millán fly to left. Harrelson appeared to have sidestepped Fosse's tag at the plate (and replays from NBC's broadcast clearly showed Fosse missed him), but he was called out by umpire Augie Donatelli, prompting a heated outburst from Harrelson, on-deck batter Willie Mays, and manager Yogi Berra.

The game stayed knotted at 6–6 until the top of the twelfth. Harrelson led off with a double and went to third when McGraw reached first on a bunt that Sal Bando overran. With two outs, Mays drove in Harrelson with a single that would turn out to be the final hit and RBI of his storied career. It gave the Mets a 7–6 lead.

After Jones walked to load the bases, John Milner grounded to second baseman Mike Andrews, but the ball went through his legs. McGraw and Mays scored to make the lead 9–6. The next batter, Grote, hit another grounder to Andrews, but his throw to first pulled Tenace off the bag (though NBC replays showed Tenace kept his foot on the bag). Jones scored to make it 10–6.

The A's added a run in the bottom of the inning when Jackson reached third as Mays lost yet another fly ball in the sun and Alou singled him home, but Andrews' errors proved too much to overcome. McGraw, who pitched six innings total, earned the win, and George Stone the save and the Mets evened the series.

A's Owner Charlie Finley was furious at Andrews' twelfth-inning miscues; he proceeded to punish Andrews (and further alienate A's manager Dick Williams) by placing the infielder on the disabled list—citing a fake injury that would have sidelined Andrews for the rest of the Series. Commissioner of Baseball Bowie Kuhn stepped in, reactivated Andrews, and disciplined Finley.

Game 3

Tuesday, October 16, 1973 8:30 pm (ET) at Shea Stadium in Queens, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 R H E
Oakland 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 1 3 10 1
New York 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 10 2
WP: Paul Lindblad (1–0)   LP: Harry Parker (0–1)   Sv: Rollie Fingers (1)
Home runs:
OAK: None
NYM: Wayne Garrett (2)

Game 3 matched up Tom Seaver and Catfish Hunter. Hunter had trouble early on when Wayne Garrett homered to right and Félix Millán scored on a wild pitch, but then found his rhythm. Seaver kept the A's off the board until the sixth, when Sal Bando and Gene Tenace broke through with consecutive doubles that delivered a run and cut the Met lead to 2–1. Joe Rudi came up with another clutch hit in the eighth when he singled in Bert Campaneris to tie the game. In the tenth, Willie Mays would make his final appearance in an MLB game, unsuccessfully pinch-hitting for Tug McGraw. Campaneris delivered the game-winning RBI in the eleventh when he singled off Harry Parker to score Ted Kubiak. Rollie Fingers got the save.

Game 4

Wednesday, October 17, 1973 8:30 pm (ET) at Shea Stadium in Queens, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Oakland 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 5 1
New York 3 0 0 3 0 0 0 0 X 6 13 1
WP: Jon Matlack (1–1)   LP: Ken Holtzman (1–1)   Sv: Ray Sadecki (1)
Home runs:
OAK: None
NYM: Rusty Staub (1)

The tide seemed to turn in the Mets' favor beginning in Game 4. A's starter Ken Holtzman couldn't make it out of the first inning after Rusty Staub smashed a three-run homer to left-center. Blue Moon Odom relieved and gave up a two-run single to Staub in a three-run Mets fourth. Jon Matlack got the win by pitching eight innings of three-hit ball. Ray Sadecki pitched the ninth and got the save.

Mike Andrews entered the game as a pinch-hitter in the eighth, prompting a standing ovation from the Mets' home crowd, in a display of defiance toward A's owner Charlie Finley. Andrews grounded out in what would be his last ever major league at-bat.

Game 5

Thursday, October 18, 1973 8:30 pm (ET) at Shea Stadium in Queens, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Oakland 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 1
New York 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 X 2 7 1
WP: Jerry Koosman (1–0)   LP: Vida Blue (0–1)   Sv: Tug McGraw (1)

Game 5 was a rematch up of Vida Blue and Jerry Koosman. This time, both pitchers threw well. John Milner had an RBI single in the second, and Don Hahn's triple to center field scored Jerry Grote with the second Mets run in the sixth. Koosman pitched well and got the win, with a save from Tug McGraw.

Game 6

Saturday, October 20, 1973 1:00 pm (PT) at Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum in Oakland, California
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
New York 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 6 2
Oakland 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 X 3 7 0
WP: Catfish Hunter (1–0)   LP: Tom Seaver (0–1)   Sv: Rollie Fingers (2)

The A's won, thanks to the clutch pitching of Catfish Hunter (who outdueled Tom Seaver), and the timely hitting of Reggie Jackson. Jackson doubled and drove in Joe Rudi in the first inning and doubled in Sal Bando in the third to give Oakland a 2–0 lead. In the eighth inning, the Mets threatened, knocking Hunter out of the game after Ken Boswell singled in a run. Reliever Darold Knowles put out the fire by striking out the sore-shouldered Rusty Staub on three pitches with two men on base. In the bottom half of the inning, the A's added an insurance run when Jackson singled, advanced to third on center fielder Don Hahn's error, and scored on Jesús Alou's sacrifice fly. Rollie Fingers got the save in the ninth inning to force a seventh game.

Game 7

Sunday, October 21, 1973 1:30 pm (PT) at Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum in Oakland, California
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
New York 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 2 8 1
Oakland 0 0 4 0 1 0 0 0 X 5 9 1
WP: Ken Holtzman (2–1)   LP: Jon Matlack (1–2)   Sv: Darold Knowles (2)
Home runs:
NYM: None
OAK: Bert Campaneris (1), Reggie Jackson (1)

Ken Holtzman outdueled Jon Matlack in a rematch of the Game 4 starters. The third inning proved to be the difference, as Holtzman lined a one-out double off Matlack to left, his second of the Series after not batting at all during the season. Matlack then surrendered a two-run opposite-field homer to Bert Campaneris (Oakland's first home run of the series), and then another two-run blast to Reggie Jackson later in the inning, giving the A's a 4–0 lead and Holtzman all the runs he needed. The Mets came back with two runs after Oakland increased their lead to 5–0 in the fifth inning, but it was not enough. Campaneris snagged a Wayne Garrett pop fly to end the series; and Jackson was named the World Series MVP.[11]

In the third inning, Gene Tenace walked for the eleventh time tying the Series record set by Babe Ruth of the Yankees in 1926. In the seventh inning, Wayne Garrett struck out for the eleventh time tying the Series record set by Eddie Mathews of the Milwaukee Braves in 1958 (later broken in 1980 when Willie Wilson of the Royals struck out 12 times). Darold Knowles got the save and became the only pitcher ever to appear in all seven games of a seven-game World Series until Brandon Morrow in the 2017 World Series.[12]

Vern Hoscheit, a coach with the A's in 1973, would win a World Series with the Mets as a coach in 1986.

Composite line score

1973 World Series (4–3): Oakland A's (A.L.) over New York Mets (N.L.)

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 R H E
Oakland A's 3 1 7 1 1 1 1 2 2 0 1 1 21 51 9
New York Mets 5 2 1 4 0 6 0 1 1 0 0 4 24 66 10
Total attendance: 358,289   Average attendance: 51,184
Winning player's share: $24,618   Losing player's share: $14,950[13]

Notes

  1. ^ Von Benko, George (July 7, 2005). "Notes: Phils–Pirates rivalry fading". Phillies.MLB.com. Major League Baseball. Retrieved January 3, 2011.
  2. ^ "Pirates perform rare three-peat feat 4–2". USA Today. September 28, 1992. p. 5C.
  3. ^ "Willie Mays Records Last Hit 45 Years Ago Today". October 14, 2018.
  4. ^ "1973 World Series Game 1 – New York Mets vs. Oakland A's". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  5. ^ "1973 World Series Game 2 – New York Mets vs. Oakland A's". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  6. ^ "1973 World Series Game 3 – Oakland A's vs. New York Mets". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  7. ^ "1973 World Series Game 4 – Oakland A's vs. New York Mets". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  8. ^ "1973 World Series Game 5 – Oakland A's vs. New York Mets". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  9. ^ "1973 World Series Game 6 – New York Mets vs. Oakland A's". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  10. ^ "1973 World Series Game 7 – New York Mets vs. Oakland A's". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  11. ^ "Skipper skips off as A's walk proud". Milwaukee Journal. October 22, 1973. p. 13. Retrieved June 20, 2013.
  12. ^ Green, G. Michael; Launius, Roger D. (2010). Charlie Finley: The Outrageous Story of Baseball's Super Showman. New York: Walker Publishing Company. p. 13. ISBN 978-0-8027-1745-0.
  13. ^ "World Series Gate Receipts and Player Shares". Baseball Almanac. Archived from the original on May 2, 2009. Retrieved June 14, 2009.

See also

References

  • Cohen, Richard M.; Neft, David S. (1990). The World Series: Complete Play-By-Play of Every Game, 1903–1989. New York: St. Martin's Press. pp. 345–350. ISBN 0-312-03960-3.
  • Reichler, Joseph (1982). The Baseball Encyclopedia (5th ed.). Macmillan Publishing. p. 2191. ISBN 0-02-579010-2.
  • Forman, Sean L. "1973 World Series". Baseball-Reference.com – Major League Statistics and Information. Archived from the original on November 30, 2007. Retrieved December 9, 2007.

External links

1973 Oakland Athletics season

The 1973 Oakland Athletics season involved the A's winning their third consecutive American League West title with a record of 94 wins and 68 losses. The A's went on to defeat the Baltimore Orioles in the ALCS for their second straight AL Championship, and won the World Series in seven games over the New York Mets to take their second consecutive World Championship.

1973 World Series of Poker

The 1973 World Series of Poker (WSOP) was a series of poker tournaments held at Binion's Horseshoe. The 1973 series marked the first time a single player won more than one preliminary World Series of Poker event.

Allan Lewis (baseball)

Allan Sydney Lewis (born December 12, 1941 in Colón, Panama) is a former professional baseball player. He was an outfielder and pinch runner over parts of 6 seasons (1967–1973) with the Kansas City/Oakland Athletics. Lewis was a member of the 1972 and 1973 World Series champion Athletics. For his career he batted .207 with 1 home run and 44 stolen bases in 156 games. Lewis is one of only seven players with more career game appearances than plate appearances.He was dubbed "The Panamanian Express" for his base-stealing ability and his country of origin, in contrast to the train run called the Panama Limited.

As a minor leaguer with the Leesburg Athletics in 1966, Lewis set a minor league single-season record with 116 steals, which stood until 1980, when Alan Wiggins stole 120.

Billy North

William Alex North (born May 15, 1948) is a former center fielder in Major League Baseball. From 1971 to 1981, he played for the Chicago Cubs (1971–72), Oakland Athletics (1973–78), Los Angeles Dodgers (1978) and San Francisco Giants (1979–81). He was a switch hitter and threw right-handed.

In an 11-year career, North compiled a career batting average of .261 with 20 home runs and 230 runs batted in. One of the fastest men in the game, he also recorded 395 stolen bases.

In 1969 North was drafted by the Cubs in the 12th round of the amateur draft. The speedy outfielder was traded to the Athletics after the 1972 season and started in center field on Oakland's 1973 World Series champions. Batting leadoff, he posted career highs in batting average (.285) and runs scored (98). However, on September 20, in a loss to the Minnesota Twins, North tripped over first base; the resulting ankle sprain not only cost him the American League stolen base title (his 53 steals placed him second, only one behind Tommy Harper), it also sidelined him for the remainder of the season and cost him the chance to play in the post-season.

In 1974 North did lead the league in steals, with 54, on an Athletics team that won its third consecutive World Series title. He was also involved in a not-so-memorable moment on June 5 of that season. He and Reggie Jackson engaged in a clubhouse fight at Detroit's Tiger Stadium that resulted in Jackson injuring his shoulder. Ray Fosse, attempting to separate the combatants, suffered a crushed disk in his neck, costing him the next three months on the disabled list.

North also led the American League in steals in 1976 with 75, at the time the second-highest in a season in franchise history, trailing only Eddie Collins' 81 in 1910 with what were then the Philadelphia Athletics. As of 2012, only Rickey Henderson has stolen more bases for the Athletics, surpassing North's total three times, each with at least 100 steals: an even 100 in 1980, a still-standing Major League record 130 in 1982 and 108 in 1983.

Injuries limited North to only 56 games in 1977, and after a slow start in 1978, the Athletics traded him to the Dodgers for Glenn Burke. His Dodgers won the National League pennant, but lost to the New York Yankees in the World Series. After the season, the San Francisco Giants signed him as a free agent; in 1979 he returned to form with 58 stolen bases, the most by a Giant in the live-ball era. Injuries, however, kept him out of 20 games and prevented him from breaking the overall franchise record of 62. After a similar season in 1980, he tailed off in 1981.

In addition to stealing bases, North also utilized his speed in the field to lead American League outfielders three times in total chances per game, twice in putouts, and once each in assists and double plays. In the second game of a July 28, 1974 doubleheader, he accomplished an unassisted double play against the Chicago White Sox. North caught Brian Downing's fly ball and continued to the second-base bag to double up Dick Allen, who had been running on the play.

North was the first player in Oakland Athletic history to serve as a designated hitter. He went 2-for-5 in the Athletics's 1973 season opener, an 8-3 loss to the Minnesota Twins at Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum.

Blue Moon Odom

Johnny Lee "Blue Moon" Odom (born May 29, 1945) is an American former professional baseball pitcher. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) from 1964 to 1976 for the Kansas City / Oakland Athletics, Cleveland Indians, Atlanta Braves, and Chicago White Sox. Odom won three consecutive World Series championships with the Athletics in 1972, 1973 and 1974.

Cleon Jones

Cleon Joseph Jones (born August 4, 1942) is an American former professional baseball player. He played in Major League Baseball as a left fielder. Jones played most of his career for the New York Mets and in 1969 caught the final out of the "Miracle Mets" World Series Championship over the Baltimore Orioles.

Darold Knowles

Darold Duane Knowles (born December 9, 1941) is an American former professional baseball pitcher. During his Major League Baseball (MLB) career, Knowles played with the Baltimore Orioles, Philadelphia Phillies, Washington Senators, Oakland Athletics, Chicago Cubs, Texas Rangers, Montreal Expos, and St. Louis Cardinals, between 1965 and 1980. He batted and threw left-handed. In the 1973 World Series, Knowles became the first pitcher to appear in all seven games of a World Series. In 2014, he was hired as the pitching coach of the Florida State League's Dunedin Blue Jays.

George Stone (pitcher)

George Heard Stone (born July 9, 1946), is a former Major League Baseball pitcher. He is likely best remembered for his 1973 season with the New York Mets, when he went 12–3 with a 2.80 ERA to help lead the Mets to the 1973 World Series.

Jim Nabors

James Thurston Nabors (June 12, 1930 – November 30, 2017) was an American actor, singer, and comedian.

He was born and raised in Sylacauga, Alabama, but he moved to southern California because of his asthma. He was discovered by Andy Griffith while working at a Santa Monica nightclub, and he later joined The Andy Griffith Show as Gomer Pyle. The character proved popular, and Nabors was given his own spin-off show, Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.

Nabors was known for his portrayal of Gomer Pyle, although he became a popular guest on variety shows which showcased his rich baritone singing voice in the 1960s and 1970s, including two specials of his own in 1969 and 1974. He subsequently recorded numerous albums and singles, most of them containing romantic ballads.

Nabors was also known for singing "Back Home Again in Indiana" prior to the start of the Indianapolis 500, held annually over the Memorial Day weekend. He sang the unofficial Indiana anthem almost every year from 1972 to 2014, except for occasional absences due to illness or scheduling conflicts.

Jon Matlack

Jonathan Trumpbour Matlack (born January 19, 1950) is an American former professional baseball player. He played as a left-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball. He was the fourth overall pick by the New York Mets in the 1967 Major League Baseball draft. Matlack also pitched for the Texas Rangers.

Mike Andrews

Michael Jay Andrews (born July 9, 1943) is an American former professional baseball player. He played in Major League Baseball as an infielder for the Boston Red Sox, Chicago White Sox and Oakland Athletics. After his playing career, he served for more than 25 years as chairman of The Jimmy Fund, an event fundraising organization affiliated with the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, Massachusetts. He is the older brother of Rob Andrews, who played five seasons in MLB from 1975 through 1979.

Paul Lindblad

Paul Aaron Lindblad (August 9, 1941 – January 1, 2006) was an American Major League Baseball left-handed middle-relief pitcher. During his career, he pitched primarily for the Kansas City Athletics and Oakland Athletics. At the time of his retirement in 1978, he had recorded the seventh-most appearances (655) of any left-hander in history.

Lindblad was born in Chanute, Kansas. A member of three World Series championship teams, he was a solid left-handed specialist in the American League for 14 seasons. A very fine fielder as well, he set a major league record by playing from 1966 to 1974 without making an error in 385 games.

Lindblad was signed by the Kansas City Athletics in 1962, who moved to Oakland in 1968. His most productive season came in 1969, when he posted career highs with nine wins and nine saves. A year later he followed with an 8–2 mark, and in the 1971 midseason he was traded to the Washington Senators, who became the Texas Rangers a year later. With Texas, he led American League pitchers with 66 appearances in 1972. He returned to Oakland at the end of the season.

Lindblad was the winning pitcher for Oakland in Game Three of the 1973 World Series against the New York Mets, by working shutout baseball in the ninth and tenth innings. In the 10th, he became the last pitcher faced by future Hall of Famer Willie Mays, who grounded out as a pinch-hitter.

In 1975, Lindblad had a 9–1 record with seven saves. On the final day of the regular season, he combined with Vida Blue, Glenn Abbott, and Rollie Fingers on a no-hitter against the California Angels. He appeared in two games against the Boston Red Sox in the ALCS.

Lindblad came back to Texas for part of two seasons and made his final majors appearance with the New York Yankees in Game One of the 1978 World Series. He finished his career with a 68–63 record and 64 saves in 665 games. He posted a 3.29 ERA and struck out 671 batters in 1,213​2⁄3 innings pitched.

Following his playing career, Lindblad joined the minor league baseball system as a pitching coach, and also worked as a custom home builder for several years.

Lindblad died in 2006 from Alzheimer's disease in Arlington, Texas at the age of 64.

Puggy Pearson

Walter Clyde "Puggy" Pearson (January 29, 1929 – April 12, 2006) was an American professional poker player. He is best known as the 1973 World Series of Poker Main Event winner.

Ray Sadecki

Raymond Michael Sadecki (December 26, 1940 – November 17, 2014) was a Major League Baseball pitcher. He is best remembered as the left-handed complement to Bob Gibson, who in 1964, won twenty games to lead the St. Louis Cardinals to their first World Series title in eighteen years.

Ron Hodges

Ronald Wray Hodges (born June 22, 1949) is a former catcher in Major League Baseball, who spent his entire twelve-year career with the New York Mets.

Hodges was originally drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in the sixth round of the 1970 Major League Baseball Draft, but did not sign. He was also drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the first round (15th pick) of the 1971 amateur draft (secondary phase), and the Atlanta Braves in the first round (tenth overall) of the 1971 amateur draft (secondary phase active), but chose not to sign with either of those teams. Eventually, he signed with the Mets, who selected him in the second round of the 1972 amateur draft (secondary phase).

During just his second professional season, Hodges was promoted to the major league roster when injuries afflicted the Mets' other catchers, Jerry Grote and Duffy Dyer. He made his major league debut on June 13, 1973, catching Tom Seaver. Four days later, he hit his first career home run off the San Diego Padres' Bill Greif. Hodges stayed with the Mets for the remainder of the season, batting .260 with eighteen runs batted in and just the one home run. He was on the Mets' postseason roster in 1973 and played in one game in the 1973 World Series, drawing a walk in his only plate appearance.

Hodges retired in 1984 with 666 games, 1,426 at bats, nineteen home runs, 147 RBIs, a batting average of .240 and an on-base percentage of .342.

Sam Angel

Sam Angel (November 30, 1920 – March 21, 2007) was a poker player best known as a top Razz player and for his two wins at the World Series of Poker (WSOP).

At the 1973 World Series of Poker, Angel won the $1,000 buy-in WSOP Razz event, with its $32,000 prize and bracelet. In 1975, he won a second bracelet and $17,000 in the $1,000 buy-in Razz event.Angel won a Razz event at the 1981 Super Bowl of Poker, organized by 1972 world champion Amarillo Slim. For this win, he received a prize of $57,000. He cashed in various other tournaments during his career, with tournament winnings over $180,000.

In the 1950s, Angel worked as a driver for Nick "The Greek" Dandalos and began playing poker during this time. He sold jewelry to raise money for his poker bankroll. Despite his poker tournament success, Angel was primarily a cash game player during much of his poker career.

Angel died on March 21, 2007.

Wayne Garrett

Ronald Wayne Garrett (born December 3, 1947) is a former Major League Baseball third baseman.

Willie Mays

Willie Howard Mays, Jr. (born May 6, 1931), nicknamed "The Say Hey Kid", is an American former Major League Baseball (MLB) center fielder who spent almost all of his 22-season career playing for the New York/San Francisco Giants, before finishing with the New York Mets. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1979.

Mays won two National League (NL) Most Valuable Player (MVP) awards, he ended his career with 660 home runs—third at the time of his retirement and currently fifth all-time—and won a record-tying 12 Gold Glove awards beginning in 1957, when the award was introduced.Mays shares the record of most All-Star Games played with 24, with Hank Aaron and Stan Musial. In appreciation of his All-Star record, Ted Williams said "They invented the All-Star Game for Willie Mays."Mays' career statistics and his longevity in the pre-performance-enhancing drugs era have drawn speculation that he may be the finest five-tool player ever, and many surveys and expert analyses, which have examined Mays' relative performance, have led to a growing opinion that Mays was possibly the greatest all-around offensive baseball player of all time. In 1999, Mays placed second on The Sporting News's "List of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players", making him the highest-ranking living player. Later that year, he was also elected to the Major League Baseball All-Century Team. Mays is one of five National League players to have had eight consecutive 100-RBI seasons, along with Mel Ott, Sammy Sosa, Chipper Jones, and Albert Pujols. Mays hit over 50 home runs in 1955 and 1965, representing the longest time span between 50-plus home run seasons for any player in Major League Baseball history. His final Major League Baseball appearance came on October 16 during Game 3 of the 1973 World Series.

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