Wendel: Changemaker Earl Weaver and the rise of the Baltimore Orioles

From SABR member Tim Wendel at The National Pastime Museum on September 11, 2017:

Eighty games into the 1968 season, the Baltimore Orioles fired Manager Hank Bauer and brought in Earl Weaver. At first, the move appeared to have little consequence outside Maryland. After all, ’68 had already become the “Year of the Tigers,” with Detroit moving out to an early lead in the American League (1968 was the last season without divisions and the winner of each league moved directly to the World Series).

The Tigers—behind Denny McLain’s 31 pitching victories and timely hitting for a cast of characters including Willie Horton, Gates Brown, Al Kaline, and Norm Cash—would win the pennant by 12 games and come back from a 3–1 deficit to upset the St. Louis Cardinals in the Fall Classic. Yes, 1968 was all about the Tigers. But in the background Weaver was already intent on turning the Orioles into contenders. It didn’t matter to him that some in the Baltimore organization didn’t think he was the best man for the job.

Read the full article here: https://www.thenationalpastimemuseum.com/article/changemaker-earl-weaver-and-rise-baltimore-orioles

Originally published: September 11, 2017. Last Updated: September 11, 2017.