Jackson: John Wyatt’s 81 appearances in ’64

From SABR member Frank Jackson at The Hardball Times on December 11, 2019:

In 1964, as in every season, someone has to lead the league in appearances.  When all was said and done, John Wyatt led the way with 81 (right behind him with 79 was the Red Sox’ Dick Radatz, who led the league in saves with 29).

As lousy as the A’s were in 1964, it’s understandable that Wyatt’s appearance at the top of the leader board passed under the radar.  Most appearances by a pitcher in a season is not one of the sexier stats out there, but Wyatt didn’t just the league in appearances — it was the first time in MLB history a pitcher appeared in half of his team’s games. So of course it was also the record for most appearances by a pitcher in a season.

Of course, relievers were becoming more and more prominent in MLB, so it was just a matter of time before someone hit the halfway mark.  In fact, Wyatt’s record was eclipsed the following season when Ted Abernathy of the Cubs appeared in 84 games.  Just four years later (1969), Wayne Granger of the Reds was the first pitcher to hit 90.

Read the full article here: https://tht.fangraphs.com/__trashed-2/

Originally published: December 12, 2019. Last Updated: December 12, 2019.