1983 New York Yankees season

The 1983 New York Yankees season was the 81st season for the Yankees. The team finished in third place in the American League Eastern Division with a record of 91-71, finishing 7 games behind the Baltimore Orioles. New York was managed by Billy Martin. The Yankees played their home games at Yankee Stadium.

1983 New York Yankees
Major League affiliations
Other information
Owner(s)George Steinbrenner
General manager(s)Bill Bergesch
Manager(s)Billy Martin
Local televisionWPIX
(Phil Rizzuto, Frank Messer, Bill White, Bobby Murcer)
SportsChannel NY
(Mel Allen, Fran Healy, others from WPIX)
Local radioWABC (AM)
(Frank Messer, Phil Rizzuto, Bill White, John Gordon)
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  • November 3, 1982: Bobby Ramos was purchased from the Yankees by the Montreal Expos.[1]
  • December 1, 1982: Don Baylor was signed as a free agent by the Yankees.[2]
  • December 9, 1982: Dave Collins, Mike Morgan, Fred McGriff and cash were traded by the Yankees to the Toronto Blue Jays for Dale Murray and Tom Dodd.[3]
  • December 14, 1982: Bobby Meacham was traded by the St. Louis Cardinals with Stan Javier to the New York Yankees for Steve Fincher (minors), Bob Helsom (minors) and Marty Mason (minors).[4]
  • December 22, 1982: Lee Mazzilli was traded by the New York Yankees to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Tim Burke, Don Aubin (minors), John Holland (minors), and Jose Rivera (minors).[5]
  • January 11, 1983: Ozzie Canseco was drafted by the Yankees in the 2nd round of the 1983 Major League Baseball draft.[6]
  • February 24, 1983: Bert Campaneris was signed as a free agent by the Yankees.[7]
  • February 28, 1983: Rowland Office was signed as a free agent by the Yankees.[8]
  • March 24, 1983: John Mayberry was released by the Yankees.[9]

Spring training

For the fourth straight spring training, the Yankees played an exhibition game at the Louisiana Superdome. On March 27, 1983, the Yankees beat the Toronto Blue Jays 2 to 1 behind six shutout innings from Doyle Alexander. Attendance was 15,129 for the game.[10]

Regular season

  • June 11, 1983: Longtime Yankee Bobby Murcer played in the last game of his career.[11]
  • June 20, 1983: Bobby Murcer announced his retirement from the New York Yankees. On the same day, he became part of the Yankees Broadcasting Team for WPIX TV.[12]
  • July 4, 1983: Dave Righetti threw a no-hitter against the Boston Red Sox[13]
  • August 4, 1983: Dave Winfield, while warming up before the 5th inning of a game at Toronto's Exhibition Stadium, accidentally killed a seagull with a thrown ball. He doffed his cap in mock sorrow. Fans responded by hurling obscenities and improvised missiles. After the game, he was brought to the Ontario Provincial Police station on charges of cruelty to animals and was forced to post a $500 bond before being released. Quipped Yankees manager Billy Martin, "It's the first time he's hit the cutoff man." The charges were dropped the following day.[14] For years afterward Winfield's appearances in Toronto were greeted with loud choruses of boos, but he later became a fan favorite.

Pine Tar Game

The baseball bat used by Kansas City Royals third baseman George Brett in the Pine Tar Incident on July 24, 1983.

The Pine Tar Game refers to a controversial incident that took place in an American League baseball game played between the Kansas City Royals and New York Yankees on July 24, 1983.

Playing at New York's Yankee Stadium, the Royals were trailing 4-3 with two outs in the top of the ninth and U L Washington on first base. In the on deck circle, George Brett was heard remarking to a teammate, "Watch this baby fly" as he shook his bat. He then came to the plate and connected off Yankee reliever Rich "Goose" Gossage for a two-run home run and a 5-4 lead. As Brett crossed the plate, New York manager Billy Martin approached home plate umpire Tim McClelland and requested that Brett's bat be examined. Earlier in the season, Martin and other members (most notably, third baseman Graig Nettles, who as a member of the Minnesota Twins, recalled a similar incident involving Thurman Munson) of the Yankees had noticed the amount of pine tar used by Brett, but Martin had chosen not to say anything until the home run.

With Brett watching from the dugout, McClelland and the rest of the umpiring crew inspected the bat. Measuring the bat against the width of home plate (which is 17 inches), they determined that the amount of pine tar on the bat's handle exceeded that allowed by Rule 1.10(b) of the Major League Baseball rule book, which read that "a bat may not be covered by such a substance more than 18 inches from the tip of the handle."

Season standings

AL East W L Pct. GB Home Road
Baltimore Orioles 9864 0.605 50–31 48–33
Detroit Tigers 9270 0.568 6 48–33 44–37
New York Yankees 9171 0.562 7 51–30 40–41
Toronto Blue Jays 8973 0.549 9 48–33 41–40
Milwaukee Brewers 8775 0.537 11 52–29 35–46
Boston Red Sox 7884 0.481 20 38–43 40–41
Cleveland Indians 7092 0.432 28 36–45 34–47

Record vs. opponents

Baltimore 8–57–57–56–75–88–411–28–46–78–48–49–37–6
Boston 5–86–66–67–64–95–74–95–77–68–47–57–57–6
California 5–76–63–108–44–86–76–66–75–75–86–76–74–8
Chicago 5–76–610–38–48–49–44–88–58–48–512–18–55–7
Cleveland 7–66–74–84–85–87–53–106–66–77–58–43–94–9
Detroit 8–59–48–44–88–57–56–79–35–86–68–48–46–7
Kansas City 4–87–57–64–95–75–76–66–76–67–68–58–5–16–6
Milwaukee 2–119–46–68–410–37–66–68–44–96–65–78–48–5
Minnesota 4–87–57–65–86–63–97–64–84–84–99–45–85–7
New York 7–66–77–54–87–68–56–69–48–48–47–57–57–6
Oakland 4–84–88–55–85–76–66–76–69–44–89–42–116–6
Seattle 4–85–77–61–124–84–85–87–54–95–74–96–74–8
Texas 3–95–77–65–89–34–85–8–14–88–55–711–27–64–8
Toronto 6–76–78–47–59–47–66–65–87–56–76–68–48–4

Notable transactions

  • May 31, 1983: Doyle Alexander was released by the Yankees.[15]
  • June 6, 1983: University of Nebraska quarterback Turner Gill was selected by the Yankees in the 18th round of the 1983 Major League Baseball draft.[16]
  • June 9, 1983: Rick Reuschel was released by the Yankees.[17]
  • June 15, 1983: Ben Callahan, Marshall Brant and cash were traded by the Yankees to the Oakland Athletics for Matt Keough.[18]
  • June 17, 1983: Dave Wehrmeister was traded by the Yankees to the Philadelphia Phillies for Jim Rasmussen (minors) and Kelly Faulk (minors).[19]
  • July 22, 1983: Mike York was released by the Yankees.[20]


1983 New York Yankees
Pitchers Catchers



Other batters



Player stats

Starters by position

Note: Pos = Position; G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in

Pos Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI
CButch Wynegar9430189.296642
1BKen Griffey Sr.118458140.3061146
2BWillie Randolph104420117.279238
SSRoy Smalley III130451124.2751862
3BGraig Nettles129462123.2662075
LFDave Winfield152598169.28332116
CFJerry Mumphrey8326770.262736
RFSteve Kemp10937390.2411249
DHDon Baylor144534162.3032185

Other batters

Note: G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in

Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI
Andre Robertson9832280.248122
Don Mattingly9127979.283432
Rick Cerone8024654.220222
Oscar Gamble7418047.261726
Omar Moreno4815238.250117
Lou Piniella5314843.291216
Bert Campaneris6014346.322011
Steve Balboni328620.233517
Larry Milbourne317014.20002
Bob Meacham225112.23504
Brian Dayett11296.20705
Juan Espino10236.26113
Bobby Murcer9224.18211
Otis Nixon13142.14300
Rowland Office220.00001

Starting pitchers

Note: G = Games pitched; IP = Innings pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; ERA = Earned run average; SO = Strikeouts

Player G IP W L ERA SO
Ron Guidry31250.12193.42156
Shane Rawley34238.114143.78124
Dave Righetti31217.01483.44169
Ray Fontenot1597.1823.3327
Matt Keough1255.2345.1726
John Montefusco638.0503.3215

Other pitchers

Note: G = Games pitched; IP = Innings pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; ERA = Earned run average; SO = Strikeouts

Player G IP W L ERA SO
Bob Shirley25108.0585.0853
Jay Howell1982.0155.3861
Doyle Alexander828.1026.3517

Relief pitchers

Note: G = Games pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; SV = Saves; ERA = Earned run average; SO = Strikeouts

Player G W L SV ERA SO
Rich Gossage57135222.2790
George Frazier614483.4378
Dale Murray402414.4845
Rudy May151506.8716
Roger Erickson50104.327
Curt Kaufman40003.128
Dave LaRoche100018.000

Awards and honors

Ron Guidry and Dave Winfield represented the Yankees at the 1983 Major League Baseball All-Star Game.

Gold Gloves were awarded to pitcher, Guidry and outfielder, Winfield.

Winfield also won the Silver Slugger Award.

Farm system

Level Team League Manager
AAA Columbus Clippers International League Johnny Oates
AA Nashville Sounds Southern League Doug Holmquist
A Fort Lauderdale Yankees Florida State League Stump Merrill
A Greensboro Hornets South Atlantic League Carlos Tosca
A-Short Season Oneonta Yankees New York–Penn League Bill Livesey




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