Joe Ferguson (baseball)

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Joe Ferguson
Catcher/Outfielder
Born: (1946-09-19) September 19, 1946 (age 67)
San Francisco, California
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
September 12, 1970 for the Los Angeles Dodgers
Last MLB appearance
June 17, 1983 for the California Angels
Career statistics
Batting average .240
Home runs 122
Runs batted in 445
Teams
Career highlights and awards
  • Participated in the 1974 & 1978 World Series

Joseph Vance Ferguson (born September 19, 1946 in San Francisco, California) is a retired Major League Baseball player who played for the Los Angeles Dodgers, St. Louis Cardinals, Houston Astros, and California Angels from 1970 through 1983. A catcher/right fielder, he was listed at 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m), 200 lbs., batting and throwing right-handed.

Career[edit]

Ferguson reached the majors in 1970 with the Los Angeles Dodgers, becoming their everyday catcher in 1973. He set a major league record for catchers by committing only three errors, leading the National League catchers in fielding percentage (.996) and double plays (17), while hitting .263 with a .369 on-base percentage. He also reached career-highs in games played (136), home runs (25), RBI (88), runs (84), doubles (26) and walks (87).

When Steve Yeager became a regular in the 1973 midseason, Ferguson shared catching duties and played right field against left-handed pitchers. He soon became known for having one of the strongest throwing arms of any outfielder in the major leagues. This came into play during Game One of the 1974 World Series against the Oakland Athletics, when Ferguson made a memorable play in right field in the top of the eighth inning, running in front of teammate Jimmy Wynn to catch a fly ball off the bat of Reggie Jackson, and then firing a 300-foot strike to Yeager to gun down Sal Bando, who was trying to score from third base. In Game Two, Ferguson hit a two-run homer off Vida Blue to provide the only Dodgers' victory in the Series. He enjoyed another fine season in 1977 with Houston, catching 122 games and hitting 16 home runs with 61 RBI and a .379 OBP. Reacquired by the Dodgers in the 1978 midseason, he helped his team reach the 1978 World Series.

After retiring, he coached at the major league level with the Texas Rangers (1986–87), working under former Dodger teammate Bobby Valentine, and the Dodgers (1988–94). He also managed in the Dodgers, Baltimore Orioles and San Diego Padres minor league systems. He currently is in his 2nd season as the manager of the Camden Riversharks Atlantic League baseball team in New Jersey. No longer with the Riversharks, 2010.

In a 14-season career, Ferguson was a .240 hitter with 122 home runs and 445 RBI in 1013 games. In 13 postseason games, he hit .200 (7-for-35) with one home run and four RBI.

Sources[edit]

Preceded by
Tim Blackwell
High Desert Mavericks Manager
1996
Succeeded by
Chris Speier
Preceded by
Tim Blackwell
Bowie Baysox Manager
1997-1999
Succeeded by
Andy Etchebarren
Preceded by
Butch Davis
Delmarva Shorebirds Manager
2000-2002
Succeeded by
Stan Hough