August 28, 1946 |
|September 10, 1967, for the St. Louis Cardinals|
|Last MLB appearance|
|July 27, 1984, for the Oakland Athletics|
|Earned run average||3.96|
|Career highlights and awards|
Michael Augustine Torrez (born August 28, 1946) is a former pitcher in Major League Baseball who played for seven different teams during 18 seasons from 1967 through 1984. Listed at 6 feet 5 inches (1.96 m), 220 pounds (100 kg), he batted and threw right handed.
In an 18-year career, Torrez pitched with the St. Louis Cardinals, Montreal Expos and New York Mets, all of the National League, as well as for the Baltimore Orioles, Oakland Athletics, New York Yankees, and Boston Red Sox the American League.
Torrez signed as an amateur free agent with the St. Louis Cardinals in September 1964. He made his debut at the age of 20 with the Cardinals. He seldom pitched in his first two seasons. He had a breakthrough season in 1969, going 10–4. He was traded to the Expos mid-season on June 15, 1971 for Bob Reynolds. In 1972 Torrez went 16–12 with a 3.33 ERA in 240 innings. However he had control problems as he walked 103 batters. He struggled in 1973 going 9–12. Torrez rebounded in the 1974 season with a 15–8 win-loss record in 186 innings.
After the season, the Expos traded Torrez to the Baltimore Orioles with Ken Singleton for Rich Coggins, Dave McNally, and minor leaguer Bill Kirkpatrick. In 1975 he had perhaps his best season of his career with the Orioles, going 20-9 with a 3.06 ERA in 270.2 innings pitched. However he also led the league in walks with 133.
On April 2, 1976, the Orioles traded Torrez with Don Baylor and Paul Mitchell to the Oakland Athletics for Reggie Jackson, Ken Holtzman, and minor leaguer Bill VanBommell. Pitching with the Athletics, Torrez had another fine season in 1976 as he went 16–12 with a career low 2.50 ERA. He was traded to Yankees early the next season for Dock Ellis, Larry Murray and Marty Perez.
Torrez won two games in the 1977 World Series for the World Champion Yankees, both of them complete game victories, and won 15 or more games in 6 consecutive seasons; he caught Lee Lacy's pop-up bunt for the final out of that 1977 Series. After the Yankees 1977 championship season, he signed as a free agent with the Boston Red Sox, receiving a five-year contract worth $1.5 million. He won 16 games during the 1978 season. In the 1978 American League East tie-breaker game, he allowed a three-run home run to light-hitting Yankee shortstop, Bucky Dent, in the late innings of the division-deciding 163rd game.
On January 13, 1983, the Red Sox traded Torrez to the New York Mets for a player to be named later. The Mets sent minor leaguer Mike Davis to the Red Sox to complete the trade. With the Mets, he beaned Houston Astros infielder Dickie Thon in 1984. At the time, Thon was considered a possible Hall of Fame player in the making but had his career permanently hampered due to the injury he sustained as a result of the beaning. Released by the Mets on June 22, 1984, Torrez signed with the Athletics on July 3. They released him on August 9.
Post playing career
- Stan Grossfeld (2009-01-05). "Save opportunity: Foulke looks to revive his big league career". Boston Globe. Retrieved 2009-05-20.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
- The Newark Star Ledger. Missing or empty
- Bell, Christopher (2002). Scapegoats: Baseballers Whose Careers Are Marked by One Fateful Play. McFarland and Company. ISBN 978-0-78-641381-2