Monday, September 28, 2009

1976 Topps #220 - Manny Sanguillen

  • Manny Sanguillen played in the majors from 1967-1980. Except for one year (1977) with the Oakland A's, he spent his whole career with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Manny had a lifetime batting average of .296.

  • Sanguillen was signed by the Pirates in 1964. He was in the minors from 1965-1968, with a brief stint with the Pirates in 1967. In '67 Manny came up to the Pirates in late July and batted .271 in 30 games. He went back to the minors in 1968 and then came back to the big leagues to stay in 1969.

  • Manny had a good season in 1969, batting .303 in 129 games. He didn't have much home run power, but he could hit for average. In 1970 Sanguillen batted .325 in 128 games and was 11th in MVP voting. Here is a June 1970 Baseball Digest article that asks if Manny would be the next superstar.

  • Sanguillen made his first NL All Star team in 1971 and finished 8th in MVP voting. He batted .319 in 138 games for the World Champion Pirates. He also batted .379 in the World Series. Manny was an All Star again in 1972 and batted .298 in 136 games. After the 1972 season he was the only Pirate player not to attend Roberto Clemente's funeral. He dove in the waters off of Puerto Rico looking for Clemente's body. Here is a May 1973 Baseball Digest article "Sanguillen Remembers Roberto."

  • In 1973 Manny was chosen to replace Clemente in right field, but was moved back to catcher in July. He batted "only" .282 in 149 games. Here is a July 1975 Baseball Digest article about the failed experiment. He had a similar year in 1974 (.287 in 151 games).

  • In 1975 Manny made his third (and last) NL All Star team. He batted a career-high .328 and got a few votes for MVP. Sanguillen played in only 114 games in 1976 and batted .290. He had a ten-day gap in August and also didn't play after September 13. After the season he had the distinction of being the only player ever traded for a manager. He (and $100,000) were sent to the A's in exchange for the managerial services of Chuck Tanner.

  • In his last season (1977) as a regular player, Sanguillen played in 152 games and batted .275 for the A's. After the season he was traded back to the Pirates for Miguel Dilone, Mike Edwards, and Elias Sosa. In 1978 Manny was a pinch hitter and a backup catcher and first baseman. He batted .264 in 85 games. In 1979 his playing time was reduced further--he batted .230 in 74 at bats but got another ring as a member of the '79 World Champions.

  • In 1980 Manny batted .250 in 48 at bats, mostly as a pinch hitter. After the season he and Bert Blyleven were traded to the Cleveland Indans for four players. Sanguillen wanted to retire and was released on February 18, 1981.
  • Liked to face: Steve Carlton (.301 with 5 HR in 103 AB), Woodie Fryman (.358 in 67 AB), and Claud Osteen (.349 in 63 AB).
  • Hated to face: Phil Niekro (.175 in 80 AB) and Tom Seaver (.235 in 68 AB).

  • After his playing career Manny did some scouting for the Pirates in Latin America and has been a spring training instructor.

  • Sanguillen operates "Manny's BBQ" at PNC Park in Pittsburgh.

Here is a 2008 video of Sanguillen showing how to block the plate:

1 comment:

  1. Went to two games at PNC this year and Manny wasnt there for either of them. Food was lousy.