July 15, 2019

1965 Greensboro Yankees

In 1965, the Greensboro Yankees of the Carolina League featured two future MLB stars on their roster.

In 1965, the Greensboro Yankees of the Carolina League featured two future MLB stars on their roster: Pitcher Fritz Peterson and shortstop Bobby Murcer. Peterson would end the season with an astounding .917 Winning Percentage going 11-1 in 14 games. He also owned a league leading 1.50 ERA and tossed 5 shutouts for Greensboro. The prior season, 1964, Peterson pitched for the Shelby Yankees of the Western Carolinas League, going 10-7 with a 2.73 ERA and striking out 194 in 155 innings. Murcer would win the Carolina League MVP award in ’65, hitting .322 with 95 runs scored, 90 RBI and 16 HR.

Both players would go on to become successful Major Leaguers. Murcer would have a long 17-year MLB career as an outfielder hitting .277 with 1,862 career hits and 252 home runs. Murcer was a 5-time All-Star and won the AL Gold Glove award in 1972. After retiring in 1983, the Yankees honored Murcer with Bobby Murcer Day at Yankee Stadium on August 7th.

Peterson’s MLB career didn’t last quite as long as Murcer’s, pitching 11 seasons in the Majors as Fritz traded his baseball aspirations, and his wife – and kids, in 1972 to teammate Mike Kekich for Kekich’s wife – and kids. Coinciding with trading wives with fellow pitcher Kekich, Peterson’s career declined quickly after the ’72 season. From 1966-1972, Peterson went 101-91 (W-L) with a 3.00 ERA for the Yankees in 254 games with his best season in 1970 winning 20 games for the Yankees and being selected to his only All-Star game. From 1973-1983, Peterson would only pitch in 101 more MLB games. For his 11-year career, Fritz would finish with a W-L record of 133-131 and a career 3.30 ERA.

More info regarding the blockbuster trade of Peterson-Kekich: https://allthatsinteresting.com/mike-kekich-fritz-peterson

Baseball-Reference: 1965 Greensboro Yankees

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