Below are more headlines from the 1989 baseball season, including an All-Star player's banishment, and a World Series postponed because of a tragedy.
Jack Clark Good for 26 HRs
Jack Clark was one of the most enigmatic players of the 1980s. Between 1984 and 1989, he played on four different teams -- that is, when he wasn't on the disabled list. In 1989 with San Diego, Clark led the league in walks (132), yet was second in strikeouts (145). He was second in the National League in on-base percentage (.410), yet hit just .242. Nevertheless, Clark remained a reliable power hitter, smacking 26 home runs in 1989.
Aging Bob Boone Rolls Along
In 1989, Bob Boone extended his Major League record for most games at catcher to 2,183. Boone, who along with Carlton Fisk is the only player to catch regularly past the age of 40, showed no let-up in 1989. At age 42, he caught 131 games and batted .274-20 points higher than his career average. He even stole three bases that season.
Ozzie Smith Tops in Fielding
Ozzie Smith closed out the decade by winning a record tenth consecutive Gold Glove Award. His fielding virtuosity, acknowledged as being the greatest of any shortstop ever, was rewarded by an annual salary of $2.34 million for three years (beginning in 1987), easily the highest compensation ever paid to a middle infielder at the time. Smith hit .273 and totaled 82 runs scored in 1989.
Bay Area Is Ravaged
Millions of television viewers who thought they were tuning in to the third game of the 1989 World Series instead saw a startling perspective of the Bay Bridge collapse. A day earlier, local fans boasted of the first-ever Bay Area Series. It was a bit of cruel irony that the bridge that linked the two Bay cities had collapsed.
Pete Rose Banned for Gambling
In one of the biggest scandals since the Black Sox, Pete Rose was banned from baseball for allegedly gambling on the Reds, the team he managed. Though evidence was not conclusive, many believed Rose actually bet on his team to lose. Rose suffered an even worse fate in 1990 when he was sentenced to prison for tax evasion. Many predicted that Rose's sins would deny him entry to the Hall of Fame. Few seemed to realize that Ty Cobb, a man who committed several brutal assaults, was the first man voted into the Hall.
Dennis Eckersley Saves the Day -- Again
Dennis Eckersley was mobbed by his teammates after the hurler saved game four of the 1989 World Series. Oakland won the decisive game 9-6. Since the first three games of the Series were blowouts, this was the only one Eckersley had a chance to save. The reliever displayed his skills in the American League Championship Series, though, saving four games against Boston in 1988 and three more against Toronto in 1989.
Rickey Henderson Leads A's to 1989 Title
The A's picked up Rickey Henderson from the Yankees in June 1989 and he sparked the team to the 1989 World Title. Henderson topped the league in runs (113) and walks (126), and led the American League in steals (77) for the ninth time. In the five-game American League Championship Series against Toronto, Henderson was unstoppable. He batted .400 with two homers, seven walks, eight steals, and eight runs.
Find highlights from the 1989 baseball season on the next page.
To learn more about baseball, see:
- 1988 Baseball Season
- 1990 Baseball Season
- Baseball History
- How Baseball Works
- How the Baseball Hall of Fame Works
- How Minor League Baseball Teams Work
- Babe Ruth