Mike Andrews

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Michael Jay Andrews

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Biographical Information[edit]

"I have no excuse for what happened... I should be able to catch the ball and throw it. Injured? No, my shoulder bothered me last year, but it's been fine this year... I'm not going to die tomorrow just because I made two errors today." - Mike Andrews immediately following Game 2 of the 1973 World Series

Mike Andrews was a starting second baseman for six of his eight major league seasons. During his best season with the bat, 1969, he posted an excellent line of .293/.390/.455. He is perhaps best remembered for a variety of things that happened in 1973:

He was the first designated hitter in the history of the Chicago White Sox on April 7, 1973, against the Texas Rangers. He was released by the White Sox in July and signed as a free agent by the Oakland Athletics. A's manager Dick Williams used a system late that year where he would rotate a number of light-hitting second basemen, pinch-hitting for them at any opportunity. Because of a bad back, Andrews was no longer an asset as a fielder at second base, but he became part of the system over the season's last two months.

Andrews became a scapegoat for A's owner Charlie Finley after making errors on back-to-back plays in the 12th inning of Game 2 of the World Series, having come on as a pinch hitter in the 8th inning. Finley had team doctor, Dr. Harry Walker, cook up a phony baloney statement, then attempted to replace Andrews by putting him immediately on the disabled list and having him sign said statement attesting he was injured. This would allow Charlie to activate rookie Manny Trillo... or so he thought. The move was not allowed by Commissioner Bowie Kuhn, who fined Finley in the process. The A's won the series anyway and Andrews only appeared in one other game in the series, receiving a thunderous ovation as a pinch hitter when the series moved to Shea Stadium. His teammates and fans on both sides rallied to Andrews's support during the remainder of the Series, some of them wearing armbands with his number 17. Manager Williams quit in disgust after winning the Series in seven games. For his part, Andrews never again appeared in a major league game, as after the 1973 season, he went to play in Japan for Kintetsu. In 1974, he filed an ultimately fruitless lawsuit against Charlie O. (the owner, not the jackass, although sometimes it was tough to tell which was which).

Mike is the brother of fellow big leaguer Rob Andrews. He created the "Mike Andrews Baseball Camp" and the "Mike Andrews & Jerry Moses Baseball Camp". He worked in the Boston area as Chairman of the Jimmy Fund charitable organization from 1979 to 2010, having first become involved when he visited a young cancer patient in the hospital as a rookie in 1967.

Notable Achievements[edit]

Further Reading[edit]

  • Saul Wisnia: "Mike Andrews", in Bill Nowlin and Dan Desrochers, eds.: The 1967 Impossible Dream Red Sox: 'Pandemonium on the Field', SABR, Rounder Books, Burlington, MA, 2007, pp. 30-36. ISBN 978-1-5794-0141-2
  • Saul Wisnia: "Mike Andrews", in Chip Greene, ed.: Mustaches and Mayhem, Charlie O's Three-Time Champions: The Oakland Athletics 1972-74, SABR, Phoenix, AZ, 2015, pp. 372-379. ISBN 978-1-943816-07-1

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