Michael Augustine Torrez (born August 28, 1946) is an American former professional baseball pitcher. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for 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 of the American League. With the Yankees, he won the 1977 World Series over the Los Angeles Dodgers.
|Born: 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|
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.
Torrez was acquired along with Ken Singleton by the Baltimore Orioles from the Expos in exchange for Dave McNally, Rich Coggins and pitcher Bill Kirkpatrick on December 4, 1974. 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.
Torrez was traded along with Don Baylor and Paul Mitchell by the Orioles to the Oakland Athletics for Reggie Jackson, Ken Holtzman and pitcher Bill Van Bommel on April 2, 1976. 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. Released by the Mets on June 22, 1984, Torrez signed with the Athletics on July 3. They released him on August 9.
Post playing careerEdit
- "Orioles Trade McNally To Montreal Expos; Five-Player Deal Completed," The Associated Press, Thursday, December 5, 1974.
- "Orioles obtain Reggie Jackson; Baylor, Torrez go to Oakland," The Associated Press, Saturday, April 3, 1976.
- Stan Grossfeld (2009-01-05). "Save opportunity: Foulke looks to revive his big league career". Boston Globe. Retrieved 2009-05-20.