Nolan Ryan is still setting records. On Sunday, he became the only major leaguer to have his number retired by three teams.
Ryan, whose number previously was retired by the California Angels and Texas Rangers, had his No. 34 retired Sunday by the Houston Astros.
“It’s really special because I’ve had a unique career from the standpoint that I was able to play as long as I did for those three teams and had a lot of unique things happen with each of them,” said Ryan, who pitched his fifth no-hitter while playing with the Astros in 1981.
Hank Aaron (Milwaukee, Atlanta), Casey Stengel (New York Yankees, New York Mets), Rod Carew (Minnesota, California) and Rollie Fingers (Milwaukee, Oakland) had their numbers retired by two teams.
Ryan pitched a record seven no-hitters and struck out a record 5,714 batters. He holds 53 records in all.
“If I had to select one record it probably would be the 5,714,” Ryan said. “That’s because of the number of innings it took and the number of years it took. I get a great satisfaction out of that.”
Cubs fire pitching coach
Pitching coach Ferguson Jenkins was fired by the Chicago Cubs, making him the first member of the organization’s current management team to be let go.
The Cubs made the announcement Sunday, when they wrapped up their second season under the regime of president Andy MacPhail, general manager Ed Lynch and manager Jim Riggleman. Chicago lost to Pittsburgh 8-3 to finish 76-86; its 4.36 ERA ranked ninth of 14 teams in the National League.
“It’s a very tough day for all of us because Fergie Jenkins is a wonderful man,” Riggleman said. “We just felt we needed a change. I’m not going to get into any specifics.”
“I’m not bitter,” said Jenkins, who won 284 games in a Hall of Fame pitching career that included 10 seasons with the Cubs. “I’ve been hired to be fired before. Baseball is like that.”
Four coaches axed by Mets
The New York Mets, who fired manager Dallas Green last month, dismissed four coaches - Tom McCraw, Steve Swisher, Rafael Landestoy and Mike Cubbage - on Sunday.
McCraw had been the hitting coach, Swisher the bullpen coach, Landestoy the bench coach and Cubbage the third base coach.
Bob Apodaca who has been pitching coach since Bobby Valentine took over as manager on August 26, is the only coach being retained for 1997.