1973 in Baseball
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1973 in Baseball

The following are the baseball events of the year 1973 throughout the world.


Major League Baseball

  League Championship Series World Series
East Baltimore Orioles 2  
West Oakland Athletics 3  
    AL Oakland Athletics 4
  NL New York Mets 3
East New York Mets 3
West Cincinnati Reds 2  

Other champions

Winter Leagues

Awards and honors

MLB statistical leaders

  American League National League
Type Name Stat Name Stat
AVG Rod Carew MIN .350 Pete Rose CIN .338
HR Reggie Jackson OAK 32 Willie Stargell PIT 44
RBI Reggie Jackson OAK 117 Willie Stargell PIT 119
Wins Wilbur Wood CHW 24 Ron Bryant SFG 24
ERA Jim Palmer BAL 2.40 Tom Seaver NYM 2.08
Ks Nolan Ryan1 CAL 383 Tom Seaver NYM 251

1 Modern single season strikeout record.

Major league baseball final standings








  • October 1 - Two make-up games were played after the scheduled end of the regular season on September 30: the Mets won at the Cubs 6-4 and the Pirates lost at home to the Padres 3-4; making a potential second game between the Cubs and Mets unnecessary.
  • October 8 - In Game 3 of the National League Championship Series, the New York Mets' Rusty Staub homers in the first and second innings as the Mets crush the Cincinnati Reds 9-2 at New York's Shea Stadium, in a game featuring a bench-clearing brawl involving future Phillies teammates Pete Rose and Bud Harrelson.
  • October 10 - Like 1969, no one thought the Mets would win the National League pennant, but they amazingly did as New York's Tom Seaver hurls the Mets into the World Series with a 7-2 victory over the Reds in Game 5 of the 1973 National League Championship Series. New York has 13 hits in the contest.
  • October 13 - The Oakland Athletics score two unearned runs in the third inning of game one of the 1973 World Series when the usually sure handed Félix Millán allows a ground ball to go through his legs. They are the only runs New York Mets starter Jon Matlack allows, but they are enough to give Oakland the 2-1 game one victory.[4]
  • October 14 - In one of the more bizarre games in World Series history, the Mets defeat the Athletics 10-7 in 12 innings in Game 2 by scoring four runs in the 12th, three of which were the result of two errors by Oakland second baseman Mike Andrews. After the game, Athletics owner Charlie O. Finley forced Andrews to sign a false affidavit stating he was disabled, which would have rendered him ineligible for the remainder of the series. A's manager Dick Williams rallied to Andrews' defense and commissioner Bowie Kuhn nullified the affidavit. Nevertheless, Finley ordered Williams to bench Andrews for the remainder of the series. Williams, in defiance, sent Andrews to the plate as a pinch hitter in Game 4 in New York three nights later as the Mets' home crowd gave a standing ovation.
  • October 21 - Bert Campaneris and Reggie Jackson hit two-run home runs in the third inning as the Oakland Athletics defeated the New York Mets, 5-2, in Game Seven of the World Series, for their second straight World Championship. Jackson is selected the Series MVP.
  • October 23 - Athletics owner Charlie Finley reveals that he will not release manager Dick Williams from his contract unless he receives adequate compensation from the team that signs him. Williams had resigned following the World Series victory two days earlier.
  • November 27 - San Francisco Giants left fielder Gary Matthews, who hit .300 with 12 home runs and 58 RBI in 145 games, outpolls eight others receiving 11 of 24 nominations for the National League Rookie of the Year Award. The runners-up are Steve Rogers (P), Bob Boone (C), Dan Driessen (3B), Elías Sosa (P), Ron Cey (3B), Johnny Grubb (CF), Davey Lopes (2B) and Richie Zisk (RF).

















  • January 9 - Lyn Lary, 66, shortstop for seven MLB teams who led the American League in steals in 1936; member of 1932 World Series champion New York Yankees.
  • February 8 - Roy Spencer, 72, catcher in 636 games, the bulk of them as a member of the Washington Senators (1929-1932), over a dozen seasons between 1925 and 1938.
  • February 28 - Syl Simon, 75, infielder and pinch hitter for the Browns who played in the minor leagues after losing much of his left hand in an accident
  • February 21 - Gilly Campbell, 65, lefty-swinging catcher who appeared in 295 games over five seasons for the Chicago Cubs, Cincinnati Reds and Brooklyn Dodgers between 1933 and 1938
  • March 12 - Frankie Frisch, 74, Hall of Fame second baseman for the New York Giants and St. Louis Cardinals who scored 100 runs seven times, led the NL in steals three times, and was the 1931 MVP; a lifetime .316 hitter, he twice batted .400 in the World Series; managed the "Gas House Gang" Cardinals to the 1934 World Series title and overall a four-time world champion as player and playing manager; later helmed the Pittsburgh Pirates (1940-1946) and Chicago Cubs (1949-1951); in broadcasting, he was a radio play-by-play announcer in Boston (1939) and New York (1947-1948), then a member of the Giants' TV team in the mid-1950s and a color commentator on the CBS Game of the Week from 1959-1961
  • March 19 - Walt Leverenz, 84, Pitcher for the St. Louis Browns from 1913 to 1915
  • March 26 - George Sisler, 80, Hall of Fame first baseman for the St. Louis Browns widely recognized as the best defensive player ever at that position, he twice batted over .400 and hit .340 lifetime; the AL's 1922 MVP, he had a record 257 hits in 1920 and also led the league in steals four times
  • April 13 - Clarence Blethen, 79, pitcher for the Boston Red Sox and Brooklyn Dodgers between 1923 and 1929


  • May 19 - Jim Moore, 69, pitcher who played from 1928 to 1932 for the Cleveland Indians and Chicago White Sox
  • May 21 - Herm Wehmeier, 46, pitcher who won 92 games in 13 seasons from 1945-1958, primarily spent with the Cincinnati Reds
  • June 11 - Bill Burwell, 78, pitcher for the St. Louis Browns in 1920-21; longtime minor-league manager and scout; served two terms as a Pittsburgh Pirates coach, including service on 1960 World Series champions
  • June 23 - Cliff Aberson, 51, two-sport athlete who was a left fielder for the Chicago Cubs from 1947 to 1949, and a halfback with Green Bay Packers in 1945
  • July 2 - Chick Hafey, 70, Hall of Fame left fielder for the St. Louis Cardinals and Cincinnati Reds, a career .316 hitter who made the first hit in All-Star history and was the first batting champion to wear eyeglasses
  • July 2 - George McBride, 92, shortstop who played primarily for the Washington Senators (1908-1920) and known for his defense; managed Senators in 1921
  • July 7 - Paul Musser, 84, pitcher for the Washington Senators (1912) and Boston Red Sox (1919)
  • July 12 - Billy Urbanski, 70, shortstop for the Boston Braves from 1931 to 1936
  • July 17 - Evar Swanson, 70, outfielder for the Cincinnati Reds (1929-1930) and Chicago White Sox (1932-1934); swiped 33 bases in 1929--but caught stealing 20 times, which led the National League
  • August 7 - Wilbur Cooper, 81, first left-handed pitcher in National League history to win over 200 games (with 216 career triumphs); won 202 games for the Pittsburgh Pirates between 1912 and 1924
  • August 13 - Alva Jo Fischer, 46, All-American Girls Professional Baseball League pitcher and shortstop who earned inductions into several baseball halls of fame
  • August 14 - Claude Willoughby, 74, pitcher who spent all but nine games of his 219-game MLB career as a member of terrible Philadelphia Phillies teams (1925-1930)
  • August 22 - George Cutshaw, 86, shortstop for the Dodgers, Pirates and Tigers who excelled on defense


  • September 5 - Jack Fournier, 83, first baseman for five teams who hit .313 lifetime, led NL in homers in 1924
  • September 10 - Roy Johnson, 70, one of few ballplayers associated with Native American descent in the pre-World War II era, like his younger brother Bob Johnson, as well as one of the most fearing outfielders in Pacific Coast League history,[5] who later played in Major League Baseball for the Detroit Tigers, Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees and Boston Bees in a span of ten seasons from 1929 to 1938, leading the American League in at-bats (640) and doubles (45) in a rookie season where he amassed 201 hits, and later with 19 triples in 1931,[6] compiling at least a .314 batting average in four seasons and 100 or more runs three times,[6] while leading the 1933 Red Sox in average, home runs and RBI and earning a World Series ring with the Yankees in 1936.
  • September 11 - Del Baker, 81, member of the Detroit Tigers organization for 28 years as a catcher, coach and manager; led Tigers to the 1940 AL pennant; later coached for Cleveland Indians and Boston Red Sox, and served as interim manager of 1960 Red Sox
  • September 13 - Johnny McCarthy, 63, first baseman who played 542 career games for Brooklyn Dodgers (1934-1935), New York Giants (1936-1941 and 1948) and Boston Braves (1943 and 1946)
  • September 14 - René Monteagudo, 57, Cuban pitcher and outfielder for the Senators and Phillies
  • September 18 - Dave Harris, 73, outfielder (primarily a reserve) who appeared in 542 career games over seven seasons with the Boston Braves, Chicago White Sox and Washington Senators between 1925 and 1934
  • September 18 - Doug Smith, 81, pitcher for the 1912 Boston Red Sox
  • October 8 - Ray Haley, 82, caught from 1915 through 1917 for the Boston Red Sox and Philadelphia Athletics
  • October 22 - Ben Van Dyke, 85, pitcher for the Philadelphia Phillies (1909) and Boston Red Sox (1912)
  • October 24 - Al Brazle, 60, pitcher who won 97 games for the St. Louis Cardinals, also leading the NL in saves twice
  • October 27 - Bennie Tate, 71, lefty-swinging platoon catcher for the Washington Senators, Chicago White Sox, Boston Red Sox and Chicago Cubs who played in 566 games between 1924 and 1934
  • November 2 - Greasy Neale, 81, outfielder for the Cincinnati Reds who batted .357 in the 1919 World Series, but began coaching football to fill the time between baseball seasons
  • November 15 - Phil Todt, 72, fine defensive first baseman who played from 1924 to 1931 for the Boston Red Sox and Philadelphia Athletics
  • November 30 - Alex Metzler, 70, outfielder who hit .285 with a .374 OBP in 560 games for the Philadelphia Athletics, Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, and St. Louis Browns from 1925 to 1930
  • December 10 - Joe Riggert, 86, outfielder for four seasons in the major leagues; holds the record for career minor league triples


  1. ^ "New York Mets 7, Pittsburgh Pirates 3". Baseball-Reference.com. 1973-09-19.
  2. ^ "New York Mets 3, Philadelphia Phillies 0". Baseball-Reference.com. 1973-04-06.
  3. ^ "New York Mets 4, Pittsburgh Pirates 3". Baseball-Reference.com. 1973-09-20.
  4. ^ "1973 World Series, Game One". Baseball-Reference.com. 1973-10-13.
  5. ^ Roy Johnson obituary Archived 2020-01-23 at the Wayback Machine. The Deadball Era. Retrieved on December 23, 2018.
  6. ^ a b Roy Johnson batting and fielding statistics. Baseball Reference. Retrieved on December 23, 2018.

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