In 1966, Sandy Koufax led the Los Angeles Dodgers to the World Series for the final time in his career, while Roberto Clemente took home the 1966 National League Most Valuable Player award. Read some of the headlines of the 1966 baseball season below:
Brooks Robinson, Clete Boyer Best at Third
Brooks Robinson and Clete Boyer were the best defensive third basemen in the American League during the decade of the 1960s. Robinson hit .269 in 1966, with 23 home runs and 100 RBI. Boyer, the younger brother of Cardinals star Ken, was hampered by a weak bat. He hit above .251 just once in his 16 seasons in the majors. In 1966, he batted .240 with 14 homers.
Sandy Koufax Wins 27, Bows Out
Forced to retire following the 1966 World Series because of a bum elbow, Sandy Koufax set or tied five records by pitchers in their final seasons. Among them were most wins (27), Ks (317), and innings (323).
Don Drysdale Wins When It Counts
Don Drysdale collected a 13-16 record for the Dodgers in 1966, one of the poorest seasons ever by a pitcher on a pennant-winning club. He was nevertheless named by manager Walter Alston to start the first game of the 1966 World Series. Knocked out early by the Orioles, Drysdale returned to pitch brilliantly in the final contest, allowing four hits and one run.
Willie McCovey Cracks 36 Homers
Willie McCovey, Willie Mays, Jim Ray Hart, and catcher Tom Haller hit a total of 133 home runs for the Giants in 1966 (McCovey tallied 36 home runs and 96 RBI for a .295 average that season). The rest of the club accounted for just 48 round-trippers, however, and the team as a whole hit .248, the next-to-lowest average in the National League.
Boog Powell: 34 HRs, 109 RBI
In 1966, Boog Powell placed third in the American League in home runs with 34 and RBI with 109. He also fanned 125 times, a career-high. Powell was one of the few sluggers during the 1960s and 1970s who walked nearly as often as he struck out.
Hank Aaron's Home Runs Keep Braves Afloat
Thanks to Hank Aaron, the Braves continued their skein of consecutive first-division finishes in 1966, their initial year in Atlanta. Aaron tallied 44 home runs (best in the National League) and 127 RBI (best in the majors) that year. The streak was in jeopardy in late August, however, before manager Bobby Bragan was replaced by Billy Hitchcock.
You can find additional headlines from the 1966 baseball season on the next page.
To learn more about baseball, see:
- 1965 Baseball Season
- 1967 Baseball Season
- Baseball History
- How Baseball Works
- How the Baseball Hall of Fame Works
- How Minor League Baseball Teams Work
- Babe Ruth