The biggest headline of the 1975 baseball season was, of course, Catfish Hunter opening the door to free agency. Below, you will find some of the other headlines of the 1975 baseball season:
Carlton Fisk Makes World Series History
At 12:33 a.m. on October 22, 1975, Carlton Fisk hit one of the most celebrated home runs in World Series history. Fisk smacked Pat Darcy's first offering off the left-field foul pole of Fenway Park in the 12th inning, breaking the stalemate to give the Red Sox victory over the Reds. The contest is cited by some as being the greatest game in World Series history.
Catfish Hunter on the Prowl
No free agent made more money or more of an impact than Catfish Hunter in 1975. Signed for $3.75 million, Hunter proceeded to turn New York on its ear: He won 23 games (tied for tops in the majors), notched a league-leading 30 complete games, earned the 1975 American Leagues Cy Young Award, and brought a winning attitude to the Bronx Bombers clubhouse.
Jim Rice Powers Red Sox
Joining Fred Lynn as the other half of Boston's rookie duo was Jim Rice. A tremendous power hitter, Rice socked 22 four-baggers and knocked in 102 runs while batting .309 in 144 games in 1975. A broken wrist, injured by a pitch from Vern Ruhle of the Tigers, cut what would have been his first full season in the majors short. Rice got back on the fast track quickly, hitting 25 home runs in 1976 and 39 in 1977. Of the two young stars, Rice would have the greatest career, clubbing nearly 400 homers. Lynn, though, would play more years than Rice.
Fans Appeal to Twins Execs
Ever the managerial nomad, Billy Martin won supporters in every city in which he stepped behind the helm, including at Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington, Minnesota, where fans let their sentiments for Martin be known. Martin skippered the Twins in 1969, taking them all the way to first place in the American League West. After two-year stints in Detroit and Texas, Martin made tracks to New York, as the Yankees finished in third place in the American League East in 1975. Martin took four Manager of the Year Awards during his career.
Harmon Killebrew Hangs It Up
Signed as a free agent by Kansas City in January 1975, Harmon Killebrew finished his career in less-than-spectacular fashion as a designated hitter/first baseman for the Royals; he batted .199 with 14 homers and 44 RBI in 1975. What was spectacular, however, was that he retired with no sacrifice bunts and no bunt hits in 8,147 at-bats.
"Little" George Brett Grows Up
Although George Brett was known as the kid brother of pitcher Ken Brett for several seasons, it didn't take the younger Brett long to establish himself in his own right. He batted for a respectable .308 average in 1975, posting 195 hits (tops in the American League) and 13 triples (tied for first in the loop) in his second full season.
Thurman Munson: .318, 102 Runs
Gruff, taciturn, and competitive, Thurman Munson was the heart and soul of the World Champion New York Yankees in 1977 and 1978. During the decade of the 1970s, Munson and Carlton Fisk were considered the top two catchers in the American League. Munson knew how to handle the bat as well, hitting .318 while driving in 102 runs in 1975.
Tom Seaver Takes National League Cy Young
Tom Seaver claimed the last of his three Cy Young Awards in 1975, as he reigned victorious in a National League-leading 22 games. The ace righty fashioned a 2.38 ERA (third in the loop) while striking out 243 batters (tops in the circuit) that year. Never again would Tom Terrific win as many games in a season.
Davey Lopes Lifts 77 Bases
One of the masters of thievery, Davey Lopes stole a total of 77 bases in 1975, best in the National League. Additionally, he racked up 38 consecutive steals without being caught to set a then-major league record. The scrappy Lopes retired after 1987 with 557 swipes, 19th on the all-time list. He was generally viewed as one of the most underrated players in the senior circuit.
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