Sal Bando, who had a five-year playing career with the Brewers and eight years as the team’s General Manager, died on January 20 at the age of 78 after a five-year battle with cancer.
Bando is probably best known as captain of the World Champion Oakland A’s when they won three straight titles in 1972, 1973 and 1974. He was a four-time All-Star third baseman. He had a career batting average of .254 and hit 242 home runs with 1,039 RBI. His playing career included 11 years with the A’s and a stint with the Brewers from 1977-81.
Here are 10 stats you may not know about Bando’s MLB career and his time with the Brewers.
Sal Bando is one of 45 players to play 150+ games in 10 MLB seasons
One: Bando was an incredibly durable and dependable player. He played in 2,019 games in his career and is one of 45 players in MLB history to play in 150+ games in 10 or more seasons.
Two: Sal had a very distinct batting average split between games his teams won and lost. Bando batted .288 in games his teams won and .211 in games his teams lost.
Three: He finished in the Top 5 for MVP voting in three seasons: 1971, 1973 and 1974. He was runner-up in the ’71 vote to teammate/pitcher Vida Blue. He finished third in 1974 and fourth in 1973. In eight seasons from 1969 to 1976, Bando received MVP votes in seven of those seasons.
Four: He pitched in one game in his career, pitching three innings for the Brewers in an 18-8 loss to Kansas City. Bando allowed two earned runs in the game. Position players Jim Gantner and Buck Martinez also pitched an inning in that contest.
Five: Bando had 106 runs scored and 113 RBI in 1969. He is one of 347 players in the Modern Era of baseball to reach 100 in both runs and RBI in the same season.
Six: Sal was a member of the 1965 College World Series champs at Arizona State. He was voted the Most Outstanding Player of that tournament. He was voted into the Arizona State Hall of Fame in 2013. Of the 112 Arizona State players to play in the majors, Bando ranks fourth with 242 career MLB HRs. Ahead of him are Barry Bonds (762), Reggie Jackson (563) and Ian Kinsler (257).
Bando played in the first-ever Brewers’ post-season series in 1981
Seven: Bando was a member of the first Brewers team to play in the post-season in 1981. In the five-game series loss to the Yankees, Bando went 5-for-17 with three doubles. His last game in baseball was Game Five, October 11, 1981, in the loss to the Yankees.
Eight: In his five seasons with the Brewers as a player, Bando played in 551 games with a .250 batting average, 50 HR and 243 RBI. His best season with the Crew was in 1978 when he hit 17 homers, had 78 RBI and batted .285.
He had a triple in 15 of the 16 seasons he played
Nine: Bando had a triple in 15 of his 16 seasons. The only year he did not have a triple was the last season of his career. He is one of 228 players in MLB history to have at least one triple in 15 or more seasons.
Ten: Sal’s All-Star Game stat line included one-for-six in four games. He started one game. In the post-season, Bando played in 44 games, batted .245 and had five career HRs and 13 RBI in the post-season.
After his baseball career ended, Sal Bando for a brief time was a color analyst for NBC with partner Bob Costas. His Wikipedia page mentioned he did a voice cameo in a 2006 episode of “The Simpsons.”
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