After 51 seasons in the National League, the Houston Astros moved to the American League in 2013. The good news: they improved from 6th place in 2012 to 5th place in 2013. The bad news: that’s because the AL West only has 5 teams. The Astros were in last place both seasons, and actually regressed (51-111 this year, 55-107 last year).
Candlestick Park in San Francisco and the Hubert H Humphrey Metrodome in Minnesota were retired this year. The Giants played in Candlestick from 1960-1999, and the 49ers from 1971-2013. (The Beatles last concert was at Candlestick Park in August 1966.) The Twins played in the Metrodome from 1982-2009, and the Vikings from 1982-2013.
Bud Selig finally gave a definite date for his long-awaited retirement. He will step down after the 2014 season. All I can say is “It’s about time!”
Hall of Famer Stan Musial passed away on January 19th, at age 92. Musial played from 1941 to 1963 (except missing 1945 while in military service), and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1969.
It's been said that bad news comes in threes. Let's hope that's it for awhile...
Former Baltimore Orioles' centerfielder Paul Blair passed away on December 26, 2013 in Baltimore at age 69. He collapsed after playing a round of golf earlier in the day.
Blair played from 1964-1980, and was the Orioles' centerfielder from 1965 to 1976, including the glory years of 1966, 1969-71, and 1973-74. He also played for the Yankees and Reds from 1977-80. Blair won 8 Gold Glove awards, and was an all-star in 1969 and 1973.
After his playing career, he was an outfield instructor for the Yankees and Astros, and a college baseball coach.
Last week, I thought we'd get through the year without any more of these, but now two in one day...
Mike Hegan, a 1B/OF for the Yankees, Pilots, Brewers, and Athletics passed away on December 25, 2013, from heart failure at age 71.
Mike's career spanned 1964-1977. He broke in with the Yankees, but didn't get significant playing time until 1969, with the Seattle Pilots. After several seasons with Seattle/Milwaukee and Oakland, he returned to the Yankees for parts of 1973 and 1974. Hegan finished up his career with the Brewers from 1974-77.
After his playing career, he was a broadcaster for the Brewers (12 seasons) and Indians (23 seasons).
Former White Sox catcher Ed Herrmann passed away on Sunday December 22, 2013 at age 67. He had been battling prostate cancer.
Herrmann played 11 seasons from 1967 to 1978, and was the White Sox' starting catcher from 1971 to 1974. He also played for the Yankees, Angels, Astros, and Expos. After his playing career, he scouted for the Kansas City Royals.