The 1985 baseball season was chock full of milestones and new records. Here are some of the headlines from the 1985 baseball season:
Dave Winfield: 26 HRs, 114 RBI
In 1985, Dave Winfield hit .275 with 26 homers and 114 RBI, helping the Yankees with his speed, defense, and throwing. Winfield is tied with Roger Maris on the Yankees' all-time home run list (203).
When Winfield signed a multi-million-dollar contract in 1981, Yankee fans expected him to produce the numbers of Mickey Mantle and the drama of Reggie Jackson. When he fell below their expectations, they got on his case.
Bert Blyleven: 17 Wins, 206 Ks
Dividing his 1985 season between the Indians and the Twins, Bert Blyleven spearheaded the American League in innings pitched (293-2/3) and strikeouts (206) while compiling a 17-16 record. He also topped the circuit in shutouts (five) and complete games (24).
Yielding a major league record 50 gopher balls in 1986, Blyleven helped the Twins to a World Championship in 1987. During the 1987 American League Championship Series, a Twins fan held up a banner that read, "Bert will have us home Blyleven."
Wade Boggs Posts .368 Average
Batting an American League-leading .368 average in 1985, Wade Boggs began a four-year streak atop the circuit in batting. He also led all circuit third basemen in chances that year with 486. Boggs was named to his first All-Star Game in 1985.
Cal Ripken: 26 HRs, 110 RBI
Cal Ripken Jr. was the top American League All-Star vote-getter in 1985 (his third of seven consecutive years as an All-Star), as he continued to produce stellar numbers. The shortstop tallied a .282 batting average, 26 homers, and 110 RBI while leading the loop in putouts and double plays that season. His stature on and off the field made Ripken the most popular Oriole since Brooks Robinson.
Keith Hernandez, Pete Rose Best at First
One of the best fielding first basemen in baseball history, Keith Hernandez hit .309 in 1985, collecting ten homers and 91 RBI. Pete Rose, the all-time hit man, batted .264 with 107 hits and 60 runs scored that season.
In 1985, it was revealed that Hernandez was using drugs and he was suspended; he put his career back together to be named team captain in 1987. Rose is still rebuilding his gambling-tarnished reputation.
Dwight Gooden: 24 Victories, 1.53 ERA
Dwight Gooden reached new heights in 1985, his sophomore season. Not only did he garner the "pitcher's triple crown" by leading the National League in wins (24-4), ERA (1.53), and strikeouts (268), he also placed first in complete games (16).
Fanning 16 batters in a 3-0 win over the Giants on August 20, 1985, Gooden became the first pitcher in the senior circuit to strike out 200 batters in each of his first two years. The 20-year-old won the 1985 American League Cy Young Award hands down.
Pete Rose Breaks Ty Cobb's Mark
At Riverfront Stadium on September 11, 1985, Pete Rose surpassed Ty Cobb as baseball's all-time leading hitter by stroking No. 4,193 off Eric Show, the starter for the Padres. To reach the milestone, Rose recorded over 100 hits a season past the age of 38. When asked to suggest his epitaph, Rose said, "Here lies the man who could hit forever."
Rickey Henderson Goes 20/50
In 1985, Rickey Henderson became the first American League player ever to post a 20 home run/50 steal season (24 dingers, 80 swipes); in 1986, he became the circuit's first player to post back-to-back 20/50 seasons (28 dingers, 87 swipes).
In 1985, Henderson had one of the greatest seasons ever by a leadoff man: a .314 average, 99 walks, 146 runs scored (the best showing in the majors since 1949), and an average of over a run scored per game (the best since 1939). Despite all his heroics, he lost the loop's MVP Award to teammate Don Mattingly.
Dale Murphy: 37 HRs, 111 RBI
Dale Murphy continued his string of fabulous seasons in 1985, batting .300 with 111 RBI while leading the National League with 37 homers, 118 runs scored, and 90 walks. A seven-time All-Star selection and a five-time (consecutive) Gold Glove-winner, the Braves slugger received the 1985 Lou Gehrig Award for his generous off-field activities. On the downside, Murphy led the National League in strikeouts (141) for the third time in his
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