1960s Baseball
Celebrating the players and teams that helped make the 1960s "Baseball's Real Golden Age."
Player Profile - Ken Harrelson










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Hawk on the Wild Side


“Free spirit” would be an understatement when describing Ken Harrelson. An All-Star talent combined with steel-like independence, Harrelson put up outstanding power hitting numbers at his best, and walked away from his playing career while still near its peak … just because he felt like it.Ken Harrelson

Harrelson was signed by the Kansas City Athletics in 1959 and made his debut in an A’s uniform 4 years later. His first full major league season came in 1965, when he led the Athletics with 23 home runs and 66 RBIs. He was traded to the Washington Senators in June of 1966, and was purchased back by the A’s a year later.

His second tour in Kansas City lasted only 2 months. When A’s owner Charles Finley fired manager Alvin Dark, Harrelson went public to protest Dark’s dismissal, calling Finley “a menace to baseball.” Finley released Harrelson outright, which turned out to be a career break for the outfielder. As a free agent, he signed a lucrative contract with the Boston Red Sox and was a key addition to Boston successful 1967 pennant drive, hitting 3 home runs with 14 RBIs down the stretch for the Red Sox.

In 1968, Harrelson had his best season, hitting 35 home runs and leading the majors with 109 RBIs. He started well in 1969, but after 10 games was surprisingly traded with pitchers Dick Ellsworth and Juan Pizarro to the Cleveland Indians for Joe Azcue, Vicente Romo and Sonny Siebert. He finished the season hitting 30 home runs with 92 RBIs playing for the team with the worst record in the American League.

During the following spring training, Harrelson suffered a broken leg while sliding into second base. He sat out most of the season with the injury, returning only for the final 17 games and hitting only 1 home run. When he returned for the 1971 campaign, he found Chris Chambliss firmly entrenched as the Indians’ first baseman. He played in 52 games for the Tribe that season, hitting 5 home runs and driving in 14 runs, and then abruptly retired to pursue a career as a professional golfer.

In 9 major league seasons, Harrelson hit 131 home runs while batting .239. After retiring as a player (and as a professional golfer), Harrelson had a long career as a baseball broadcaster, with a stint as general manager of the Chicago White Sox.

 

Looking for Ken Harrelson’s stats? In Hardball Bob's opinion, the best source for online statistics is Baseball-Reference.com. For the Hawk’s career stats, go here.


1960s Baseball … Great Players, Great Teams, Great Stories.

Re-live the pleasure of baseball the way it was meant to be played … 2-hour games with great pitching, power hitting, and no performance-enhancing chemicals.

 

Athletics Heroes

Where were you when Reggie Jackson got 10 RBIs in one game, when Catfish Hunter pitched a perfect game, and drove in 3 runs himself?

 

Athletics Heroes brings back the best of the 1960s Kansas City Athletics (and the Oakland teams at the decade’s end).


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Athletics Heroes are available now from Amazon.

 










Red Sox Heroes

Where were you when Yaz dazzled all baseball while winning the Triple Crown … when Dick Radatz lumbered out of the bullpen and scared batters into swinging at fastballs they could barely see? 

 

Red Sox Heroes brings back the best of the 1960s Boston Red Sox..


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Red Sox Heroes are available now from Amazon.

 








60 From The ‘60s

Where were you when Maris blasted #61 … when Koufax tossed his fourth no-hitter, fighting through the pain that came with every pitch?

Where were you when Robbie and Yaz won back-to-back Triple Crowns? And when Denny McLain had more wins in one season than many of today’s pitchers have starts?

60 from the ‘60s brings together 60 player profiles in one volume. The 1960s were full of flat-out great players and outstanding performances. Their stories are here. Enjoy the memories!

 

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Softcover edition: $14.99

Kindle edition: $5.99

 

Softcover and Kindle versions 
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60 From The ‘60s are available now from Amazon.