Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Your 1981 Red Sox Pt. 14: Carney Lansford

In this series, I will look at each player who played in 1981, the year I was born. Because, why not?
When I was a kid and getting into baseball, I thought it was so cool that a Red Sox player won the batting title the year that I was born.  That player, obviously was Carney Lansford.
Lansford was in his fourth season in the Majors in 1981, and his first with the Red Sox.  He came up with the Angels in 1978 and was third in the Rookie of the Year vote.  He was traded to Boston, along with Mark Clear and Rick Miller in exchange for long-time fan favorites Rick Burleson and Butch Hobson.  Injuries derailed Burleson and Hobson in California, so this trade ended up working out better for Boston.
Taking over for Hobson at third, Lansford turned in one of, if not the, best seasons of his career.  His power was noticeably absent as he hit just four home runs, but that may have had something to do with the strike during the season.  But he hit .336/.389/.439, driving in 52 and stealing 15 bases.  His average was a career high.  He also won a Silver Slugger Award, in the first season the awards were given out, and finished sixth in the MVP race.

1982 was Lansford's second, and last, season in Boston.  He had another good year, hitting .301/.359/.444 with 11 home runs and 63 RBIs.  Unfortunately for him, Boston had a young third-baseman who made his debut in 1982, named Wade Boggs.  Lansford was traded to Oakland along with Garry Hancock and a prospect for Tony Armas and Jeff Newman.  He would play the rest of his career in Oakland.

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