Branch Rickey signs a five-year deal with the Pirates to be the club's executive vice president and general manager. The 'Mahatma's' magic doesn't seem to work, as the Bucs will compile a 269-501 record (.349) during his tenure in Pittsburgh.
Tiger Denny McLain (24-9, 2.80) and Oriole Mike Cuellar (23-11, 2.38) each receive ten votes from the BBWAA for being the best pitcher in the American League. The result marks the first time the Cy Young Award balloting has ended in a tie.
After being the runner-up last season with the Expos, 31-year-old right-hander Mike Marshall becomes the first relief pitcher to win the Cy Young Award. The Dodgers' 'Iron Man' set major league records for relievers with innings pitched (206), game appearances (106), consecutive games (14), and games finished (83).
After having a career year with the Twins, reliever Bill Campbell becomes one of the first players to cash in on the new free-agent system. The Michigan native signs with the Red Sox for big money, a four-year, one-million-dollar contract.
Willie Hernandez joins Rollie Fingers as the only reliever to win the MVP and Cy Young awards in the same season. The Tiger closer had edged out fellow relief pitcher Dan Quisenberry for the top pitching prize a week ago.
The Reds trade right-handed pitcher Ted Power and shortstop Kurt Stillwell to the Royals for shortstop Angel Salazar and left-hander Danny Jackson. The southpaw, recording a 9-18 record for theRoyals this year, will be the runner-up for the National League's Cy Young Award next season, compiling a 23-8 record and a 2.73 ERA for Cincinnati.
The BBWAA selects David Justice, who received 23 of 24 of the first-place votes cast by the writers, as the National League's Rookie of the Year. The 24-year-old Braves' freshman hit .282 with 28 home runs and replaced outfielder Dale Murphy in right field after the team traded the two-time MVP to the Phillies in August.
For a second time, the Baseball Writers' Association of America names Dusty Baker as the National League's Manager of the Year. The Giants skipper, who led his team to a surprising 90-72 record, was first honored in 1993 and will win the honor again in 2000.
Mariner closer Kazuhiro Sasaki (2-5, 3.16, 37 saves) becomes the second-oldest major leaguer to win Rookie of the Year honors when the 32-year-old captures the American League honor. Boston Braves rookie Sam Jethroe was 33 days older than the Japanese reliever when he won the National League award in 1950.
"We had hoped that we were in a new era, one that would see a much better relationship between players and owners. Today's announcement is a severe blow to such hopes." - DONALD FEHR, the Players Association executive director, commenting on MLB's plan to contract two teams.
Denying it's a negotiating ploy, major league owners give commissioner Bud Selig the authority to "begin the process" of eliminating two 'to be announced' teams by a 28-2 vote. Donald Fehr, the Players Association executive director, calls the action of possibly removing the Expos, Twins, or Marlins most imprudent and unfortunate and the worst manner to begin negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement.
Citing Dusty Baker's reluctance to stay with the organization, an unhappy general manager, Brian Sabean, announces the Giant skipper of the last ten years will not be back to manage San Francisco next season. The National League pennant-winning skipper has supposedly expressed an interest in the Cubs and Mariners.
Randy Johnson wins his fifth Cy Young Award, the fourth consecutive with the Diamondbacks. The 39-year-old southpaw, with 24 victories, 334 strikeouts, and a 2.32 ERA, becomes the first National League hurler since Dwight Gooden in 1985 to win the pitching equivalent of the triple crown.
After Charles Littleton refused to remove his Dodgers hat at a City Council meeting, the Saginaw (MI) police TASER him with 50,000 volts. The 22-year-old Saginaw Valley State University student, attending the city hall gathering meeting to gain extra credit for a sociology class, became unruly, according to police, when asked to take off his baseball cap.
At their annual meeting, baseball's general managers vote 25-5 in favor of using instant replays on a limited basis. The proposal, which owners, players, and umpires will need to approve using video a reality, would be utilized only in determining home run calls in doubt due to possible fan interference, balls clearing the fence, and balls near or over the foul pole.
Curt Schilling agrees to terms to stay with the World Champion Red Sox. The $8 million one-year deal includes an additional $5 million in bonuses, $3 million based on innings pitched, and another $2 million based on the right-hander's weight.
Padres right-hander Greg Maddux, breaking a tie with former Orioles third baseman Brooks Robinson and veteran hurler Jim Kaat for the most Gold Gloves in a career, wins his 17th, an honor bestowed by managers and coaches for fielding excellence. The 41-year-old future Hall of Famer has been selected yearly as the top fielding pitcher in the National League since 1990, except when Mike Hampton of the Braves won the 2003 honor.
The Diamondbacks exercise their $8.5 million option on the 2006 Cy Young Award winner, Brandon Webb. The 30-year-old right-handed starter, who underwent shoulder surgery in August, was shut down after pitching just four innings on Opening Day and did not return to the mound again during the season.
The Dodgers announce their new general will be Zaidi Farhan, the former Director of Baseball Operations and assistant GM of the A's. The MIT graduate, the first Muslim to hold the position for any American professional sports franchise, joins the team's overhauled front office, including the recently hired Andrew Friedman (president of baseball operations) and Josh Byrne (senior vice president of baseball operations).
Mets closer Edwin Díaz and the team agree to a five-year, $102 million extension with a full no-trade clause and a sixth-year option. The 28-year-old reliever compiled 32 saves with a 1.31 ERA while allowing only three home runs in 61 appearances for the 101-win second-place club.