Former big leaguer Gary Peters has passed away at the age of 85, per a report from Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times.
A native of Pennsylvania, Peters signed with the White Sox as an amateur in 1956. He got called up to the majors for brief showings in four straight seasons from 1959 to 1962, never getting to pitch more than 10 1/3 innings in any of those seasons. He finally got an extended run in 1963 and made the most of it. He tossed 243 innings that year over 30 starts and 11 relief appearances, posting a tidy 2.33 ERA that led the American League. He was given the AL Rookie of the Year award for that season. The southpaw built on that campaign with another strong one in 1964. He made 36 starts and one relief appearance, logging 273 2/3 innings with a 2.50 ERA. His 20 wins were tops in the American League and he made the All-Star team, the first of two times in his career.
He would continue to post solid results for most of remainder of the decade, keeping his ERA under 4.00 in each year through 1968. In 1969, his ERA jumped to 4.53 and he was traded to the Red Sox afterwards. He would pitch in three more seasons in Boston with an ERA just over 4.00 in each, with 1972 marking his final major league action.
Peters finished his career with a 3.25 ERA over 2,081 innings pitched in 359 major league games. He is credited with 124 wins, five saves, 79 complete games, 23 shutouts and 1,420 strikeouts. He won the Rookie of the Year in 1963, made the All-Star team in 1964 and 1967, led the AL in ERA twice and wins once.
MLBTR sends our condolences to Peters’ family, friends, former teammates and loved ones.
A good hitter for a pitcher as well. .222 career average with 19 homers and over 100 RBIs. Some other position players are making big bucks for almost that kind of production in 807 net ABs. He was a solid pitcher with a bat as well. RIP.
Ray Herbert died, too.
Won Rookie of the Year in his 5th MLB season. Has to be record. RIP
Strange that he didn’t get any Cy Young love in ’63 or ’64.
Only 1 cy young award and couldn’t touch Koufax or Chance.
Curly Was The Smart Stooge
I watched him as I grew up, my own destiny is catching up with me…
Kind of dark.
Beldar J. Conehead
Yes, the guys on my 60’s baseball cards are passing away pretty regularly.
Bill Davis just passed he was on 5 rookie star cards 65, 66, 67, 68 and 69 a record.
Bill Davis 1b opening day of the Padres inagural season and for the next few games till Nate Colbert (who also recently passed) took over and the rest is history.
Dumpster Divin Theo
deGrom Texas Ranger
No recognition in 66 either
An underrated SP who led a strong but mostly forgotten mid to late 60s Chisox pitching staff. One whose 1967 2.45 team ERA is lowest in live-ball era. Those ’67 White Sox finished just 3 GB of Red Sox in AL pennant chase. Peters himself put in a sub-2 ERA in ’66. RIP
Mediocre pitchers makes tens of millions of dollars a year. What would Gary Peters make now? RIP Gary you were one of the best for about a 6 year span then was pretty good.
And a good hitter for a pitcher.
Yes, he was. Nineteen career HRs and 102 RBIs.
Red Sox used him as a pinch hitter!
So did the White Sox.
Him from the left side and Seibert from the right.
Ahh- Joel Horlen, Gary Peters, Tommy John, Juan Pizzaro, Hoyt Wilhelm throwing to JC Martin. Those were the days. RIP Gary.
If you were around in those days like we were those pitchers pls JC Martin were truly unforgettable!!! Gave my Yankees all they could handle. Gary Peters was in my humble opinion one of the most underrated pitchers of my lifetime. Also loved to watch him hit.
RIP Mr. Peters and thanks so much for your class and talent.
They lost more games 1-0 or 2-1 than any team in the history of baseball I would bet.
Among my favorite White Sox. Gary Peters was not only an excellent southpaw starting pitcher but also a good hitter. He belted 19 HR’s in his MLB career and was frequently used as a pinch-hitter.
19 HR for a pitcher including dead ball 1968 is awesome
Yes, indeed! 19 homers in 807 ABs. He hit .271 for the Red Sox in 1971 with a OPS of .700.
baseballteam – Great call on the 1968 dead ball!!
Have to laugh because folks don’t usually understand how radically different the ball has been from year to year.
In 68 the HRs/Game were 0.614 down from 0.710 in 1967. People thought it was the pitching so they lowered mounds. It had nothing to do with the mounds. It was all about the baseball. Deadest baseball since 1946.
In 1947 a new post WWII ball was introduced and HRs jumped roughly 50% which accounts for some of the great HR hitters of the 1950s. Nobody got accused of using drugs, corked bats or anything else in the 1950s when the game enjoyed the single greatest change in the bounce built into the baseball.
1947 HRs/Game were up from the 0.489 in 1946 to 0.630.in 1947. Note that the number is higher than the 1968 number as you so astutely pointed out.
Red Sox best pinch hitter in 1971. And a pretty darn good pitcher. RIP, Gary.
Pizzaro and Horlen recently passed in last couple years. It is a shame Tommy John is not in the Hall of Fame. He made it possible for many pitchers to extend their careers and also won over 280 games.
The HOF isn’t about the best baseball players or the guys who contributed to baseball the most. They let the scum bag Selig in after he threw a generation of players under the bus for something he condoned as the owner of the Brewers AND to add insult to injury it was Selig’s decision to bring back the 1987 baseball in 1995 after the strike to help baseball regain it’s footing among sports BUT it misled a lot of people into thinking steroids had an impact on HRs which the data shows it didn’t..
In 1987 HRs rose year to year by over 20% and it was because the ball was different from the 1986 ball. It had far more life in it. The MLB chose to go back to the previous ball in 1988 and the numbers dropped by over 20%. As commissioner in 1995 Selig needed something to boost ratings so he brought back the 1987 baseball and once again there was a huge jump in HRS which delighted the fans and raised the question of whether steroids were the source of this jump despite steroids being prevalent in baseball since the 1970s. Why didn’t steroids jump HRs during their first 20 years? It makes no sense.
It’s because the ball change created the illusion of a steroid impact and by keeping his mouth shut about the ball Selig found a way to be the savior of baseball by simply throwing a handful of stars under the bus. It was the epitome of hypocrisy since as owner he condoned their use and frankly at that time nobody thought about the impact of steroids because HRs weren’t rising in the late 80s when Selig condoned them.
Once he changed the ball in 1995, there was a 14 year new plateau of HRs hit in baseball. HRs per game from 1988 (the year after the accidental wrong ball year of 1987) averaged 0.75 per game. Once the 1987 ball was re=introduced in 1995 HRs per game averaged over 1.00 or a 33% jump from the previous baseball.
Writers and fans all jumped to the conclusion that it was steroids because none of the ball antics were public back then. When Selig remained silent about the change in the baseball he condemned an entire generation of players for the impact of using steroids. Unfortunately, the data NEVER has supported the argument that steroids changed anything more than the stamina and strength of players. HRs should have grown from the 1970s when use became prevalent but it didn’t. HRs jumped 4 times in history. 1 – The live ball era 2 – The post WWII baseball 3 – The accidental 1987 ball that became the annual ball in 1995 and 4 – the 2015 ball that jumped HRs per game from 1.01 to 1.16 in 2014 and then 2015.
By 2019 HRs/Gm had risen to 1.39 (a number more than 20% higher than the highest during the alledged steroid era)!!! Nobody is shouting about steroids now or even HGH. Launch angle and bat velocity pretend to be why HRs have risen but it’s not just like steroids weren’t. It’s all about the baseball and Selig is in the HOF when better candidates like Tommy John are not despite their far greater baseball achievements.
Selig should have been banned from baseball and removed from the HOF when it came out about the 1987 baseball and what he did in 1995 but politics wins out in these type of decisions.
Ray Epps completely agree, sorry for the tangent but not seeing TJ in and knowing Selig got in after all he did to destroy so many players careers appalls me.
Albert Belle never on the juice should be in. He was a jerk like Jeff Kent. Curt Schilling because he supported Trump did not get in. These sportswriters are a joke. On another note. I am from the old school when rbis mattered. Harold Baines was a great player before sabermetrics people would not be as critical of enshirnment. I am glad he is. Now with all these crazy stats Rick Reuschel was one of the top 30 pitchers of all time. He was very good but not great.
Explain the Reuschel comment please.
Mendoza Line 215
Pulled- That being said steroids was a major factor in the increase in home runs of a number of players.Juiced balls alone did not account for nearly the whole difference.These guys looked like normal strong athletes before steroids,then a muscled up Popeye afterwards.Your theory makes sense but only in conjunction with the steroid era.
Those 1960s ChiSox starting pitchers were outstanding yet almost unnoticed.
I remember him from my older brother’s late 1960s Strat-o-matic cards.
Buuba ho tep
I had stratomatic also in the mid 60s. I remember Gary Peters well. Condolences to his family RIP
I loved Strat-O
I was more of an APBA guy
Those were the days my friend 🙂
I was as well. Showing our ages.
Matt Keough Strato God! I pitched him every game because he had hardly any innings on his card but he was awesome. Think he won 20 games for me in a Strato season. Sox P’s always had good stats. Think Keough pitched for the Senators or whatever they were called then. LOL
The small sample splits were great. Lol
“All the boys are still on the stoop playing Strat-O-Matic Baseball.”
RIP Mr. Peters.
all in the suit that you wear
Mr. Peters would have improved the Nats’ pitching staff last year – at 84 years old.
What a fine career. RIP.
Part of a great group of Sox starting pitchers. No offense needed the starters held everyone at bay for 7+ innings. It took Chris Sale to break their innings record. Will never forget him.
All my old baseball cards are passing on. RIP Gary Peters.
Gary was the ace of the 60’s sox staff
Gary Peters was a solid pitcher on Al Lopez White Sox teams they always gave the Yankees a scare in the early 60’s.
Surprised to see he was a good hitter too.
The dude had 7 home runs over 201 at bats. One of the best hitting pitchers ever.
One of my first MLB fan days I met Gary Peters and Joe Horlen. Great memory. Both spoke about pitching with the kids in the audience. Gary, RIP.
Mid 60’s White Sox players spent a lot of time at Shinnick’s Pub by Commiskey. Peter’s, Hoyt Wilhelm and Smokey Burgess use to play cards in the back room with players from visiting teams until wee hours of the morning.
msqboxer – Great story!! Ahhhh, the good old days!!
Mendoza Line 215
From Mercer Pa.Chisox wanted to send him or Joel Horlen to the Buccos for none other than Willie Stargell in 1966.
Two fine pitchers but I’m glad Joe Brown did not make that deal.
RIP Gary Peters.You were one fine all around player.
In nurse follars
That was back when money and contracts did not dictate pitch count, innings count or any other investment protection schemes. There were pitchers who threw 300 innings. Now if a pitcher makes 30 starts and throws 200 innings it’s considered child abuse.
In nurse follars
Phil Neikro did it in 1979 (342), 1978 (334.1) and 1977 (330.1), leading the league all three times. 1977 was the last year multiple pitchers did it, with the immortal Dave Goltz (303), Jim Palmer (319, to lead the AL) and Steve Rogers (301.2) joining Neikro.
Wilbur Wood pitched like 376 innings in 1972 and 359 in 1973.
Knuckleballers could pitch both games in Double Header since there was very little strain on their arm. They just needed a manicure between games!!
78 Complete games, who has that many now? In the hall of very good.
There are pitchers who could do it today, but they’re not allowed.
78 Complete games, who has that many now? In the hall of very good.
One of the best 5 year spans in history. Great pitcher
We still strato every week!
RIP, 78 complete games,, who has more now, my guess nobody. Hall of very good.
I still have his Topps All Star rookie card with the trophy in my collection. Never lucky enough to watch him pitch, but I have always appreciated the history of the sport and not just the top 1% in the Hall. RIP
Mark Buehrle’s brother by another mother. Rest in Peace.
Peter’s could hit too. I used to play this game called all star baseball. Players would have cards probability for at bats. Peter’s had one of the widest #1 (HR) of any pitcher besides cloninger.
I still have that game. I played it with my older brothers. Same with Strat-O-Matic. I still have a newspaper photo of Gary throwing out the first pitch at a Sox game on my wall. Joel Horlen, too.
Wilmer the Thrillmer
One of the most underrated pitchers of the 1960’s. Had fine years with Boston in 1970 and 71 as well. Condolences to his friends and family.
deGrom Texas Ranger
He was my favorite pitcher.