This Date in Pittsburgh Pirates History: December 22nd, Connie Mack and Matty Alou

Seven former Pittsburgh Pirates born on this date, plus one trade of note.

Connie Mack, Hall of Fame manager for the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1894 to 1896, and also played for the team from 1891 to 1896. As a player, he was known as a strong defensive catcher. He began his pro career in 1884 at 21 years old, playing for Meriden of the Connecticut State League. Over the next two seasons before making his big league debut, he played for a team from Hartford in three different leagues. His defense obviously got him to the majors, as he hit .183 in 57 games in 1885, with seven doubles and no homers or triples. For Hartford in 1886, Mack batted .251 in 71 games, with 12 doubles, and once again no homers or triples. He began his Major League career with the Washington Nationals in September of 1886, spending his first four seasons there. He played ten games that first season and surprisingly hit .361 with five RBIs. In his first full season, Mack hit .201 in 82 games, with 35 runs scored, 20 RBIs and 26 steals. His average dropped to .187 in 85 games in 1888, though he had 49 runs scored and 31 steals. He hit his first three homers that season, which is impressive only because he hit a total of five homers in his 11 seasons in the majors. All of the homers came within a two-week stretch at the end of the season, and the last one was an inside-the-park homer off of Pittsburgh’s Ed Morris.

Mack had quite a breakout performance in 1889, batting .293 in 98 games, with 51 runs scored, 42 RBIs, 26 steals and a career high 16 doubles. Like most of the better players of the day, he went to play in the newly formed Player’s League in 1890. He played 123 games for the Buffalo Bisons that year, hitting .266 with 95 runs scored, 15 doubles, 12 triples, a career high 53 RBIs and 47 walks, which was more than twice as many walks as he had in any other season. After the PL folded, most players returned to their original teams from the 1889 season as long as the team put them on a reserve list. For Mack though, the Nationals franchise no longer existed, so he was free to sign with another team and Pittsburgh came calling. While other teams tried to make a claim for Mack, with Boston putting up the strongest fight, Pittsburgh finally officially got their catcher on February 4, 1891.

Mack spent the remainder of his playing days in a Pirates uniform, sharing the catching duties for six seasons. He batted .214 with a .536 OPS in 75 games in 1891, disappointing like many of the other players on the team that year when they thought they had a chance for the title, but finished 55-80. He almost left the club after the 1891 season when they tried to cut his salary, refusing to sign for the new terms. His best season came in 1892 when he caught 92 games and threw out a league leading 47% of attempted base stealers. That number particularly stands out when you realize just how much running teams did back then. Opponents attempted 257 steals against him, meaning he threw out an average of 1.32 runners per game. By modern metrics, he had 2.6 WAR on defense in 1892, the second best mark in the majors. Mack batted .243 in 97 games, with 39 runs scored and 31 RBIs that year. In 1893, offense was up around baseball due to new rules put in that worked against pitchers. He played just 37 games that season due to an ankle injury, hitting .286 with 15 RBIs and 22 runs scored. The 1894 season was a peak year for offense and he hit .247 in 70 games, with a .619 OPS. As a team the Pirates (who were called the Braves that season) hit .312 and didn’t lead the league, so you can see how below average his offense was that season. In 1895, Mack hit .306 in 14 games, but most of his energy was spent as the manager. He played his final 33 big league games in 1896 when he hit .217 with a .515 OPS, spending most of his time at first base. Mack hit .242 in 326 games with the Pirates. In his big league career, he hit .244 in 724 games, with 392 runs scored, 265 RBIs, 127 steals and 170 walks, compared to 127 strikeouts.

Mack took over the managerial duties in late 1894 and led the team to a winning record in each of his two full seasons. The Pirates finished 12-10 with him at the helm in 1894, then had a 71-61 record in 1895. He’s credited with a 66-63 record in 1896, though that is off by a little (see below). After a disagreement with the Pirates near the end of the 1896 season, he moved on to manage a minor league team from Milwaukee for four years before the American League was formed in 1901. He became the manager/owner of the Philadelphia Athletics club, guiding the team for 50 seasons, winning five World Series titles. His 3,731 career wins as a manager will likely never be broken (he also lost 3,948 games), but the current accepted number is actually wrong. When Mack managed the Pirates in 1896, he left the team with five games left in the season. The Pirates went 2-3 during those games with Patsy Donovan as the manager, yet they are credited to Mack, who resigned from the position and left the team. The closest active manager is Tony LaRussa, who is 910 wins away from Mack after returning during the 2021 season. Mack’s son Earle played five games over three seasons in Philadelphia for his father and also managed in the majors, though he was mostly his father’s bench coach.

Matty Alou, outfielder for the 1966-70 Pirates. He originally signed by the New York Giants out of the Dominican Republic in 1957 when he was 18 years old. He comes from a great baseball family that included his brothers Jesus and Felipe, as well as his nephews Moises Alou and Mel Rojas, and his cousin Jose Sosa. Between them, they played a total of 76 seasons in the majors. He debuted in pro ball in 1957 with Class-D Michigan City of the Midwest League, where he hit .247 with 55 walks and 79 runs scored in 124 games. He moved on to St Cloud of the Class-C Northern League in 1958 and hit .321 in 121 games, with 92 runs, 84 walks and 36 steals. That winter he batted .313 in 128 at-bats in the Dominican. In 1959, Alou played for Class-A Springfield of the Eastern League, where he batted .288 in 121 games, with 93 runs scored, 30 doubles and 11 homers. In 1960, he jumped to Triple-A Tacoma of the Pacific Coast League. He played 150 games, hitting .306, with 97 runs, 39 doubles, eight triples, 14 homers and 73 RBIs. At the end of the season, he joined the Giants (then in San Francisco) and went 1-for-3 in four games.

In 1961, Alou saw a bench role for the Giants, hitting .310 in 81 games, with 38 runs scored and 24 RBIs. He spent part of the 1962 season back in the minors at Tacoma. He still played 78 games for the Giants that year, with 28 runs scored and a .292 average. He was with the Giants for all of 1963 and he was used mostly as a pinch-hitter, seeing just 80 plate appearances in 63 games. He did not do well, hitting .145, with a .335 OPS. On September 15, 1963 at Forbes Field, the three Alou brothers played in the same outfield for the first of three times that season. In 1964, he played 110 games and received 267 plate appearances, which was his high to that point. He hit .264 with 28 runs scored and 14 RBIs. He saw more playing time in 1965, but it didn’t come with better results. He hit just .231 with 37 runs scored and 18 RBIs, while posting a .573 OPS.

The Pirates acquired Alou from the San Francisco Giants on December 1, 1965 for Ozzie Virgil and Joe Gibbon. He was just a .260 hitter over 453 games in his six seasons with the Giants. When he joined the Pirates, manager Harry Walker, along with Roberto Clemente, convinced Alou to change his approach at the plate and the new style helped him win a batting crown his first season with a .342 average, 111 points higher than he hit in 1965. He finished ninth in the NL MVP voting, with his outfield partner Clemente winning the award. Alou batted .338 with 87 runs scored in 1967, then the 1968 season saw him make his first All-Star team. He finished second that year to Pete Rose in batting (.335 to .332) and 11th in the NL MVP voting, but his personal best season would be the 1969 season. Alou set a (since broken) Major League single season record for at-bats in a season with 698. He hit .331 by collecting 231 hits, the third highest total in team history trailing Paul Waner’s record 237 in 1927 and his brother Lloyd’s 234 in 1929. Alou led the league with 41 doubles, scored 105 runs and added 22 stolen bases, while making his second All-Star appearance.

In 1970, Alou dropped down to a .297 average. It was easily his lowest total while with the Pirates, but he still scored 97 runs and collected 201 hits thanks to a league leading 677 at-bats. After the season the Pirates traded Alou, along with veteran pitcher George Brunet, to the St Louis Cardinals in exchange for Nelson Briles and Vic Davalillo. With the Pirates he hit .327 in 743 games, the fifth highest average in team history. Alou hit .315 in 149 games for the 1971 Cardinals, with 85 runs scored, 28 doubles and a career high 71 RBIs, as well as 19 stolen bases. He remained in St Louis through late August of 1972 when he was traded to the Oakland A’s. He was hitting .314 at the time of the trade, then batted .281 in 32 games with the A’s.

Alou was traded to the New York Yankees after the 1972 season, then remained there until a September 1973 trade (for cash) sent him back to St Louis. He hit .296 in 123 games for the Yankees, then went 3-for-11 in 11 games for the Cardinals. After the season, he was sold to the San Diego Padres, who released him in July of 1974 after he hit .198 in 48 games, ending his big league career. Alou went right from San Diego to Japan and played his final 2 1/2 season of pro ball overseas. He was  a .307 career hitter in 1,667 games over 15 seasons, with 780 runs scored, 235 doubles, 31 homers, 427 RBIs and 156 steals.

Jacob Stallings, catcher for the 2016-21 Pirates. He was originally drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the 42nd round in 2011 out of UNC. He decided to return to school for his senior year and moved up to a seventh round pick of the Pirates in 2012. Stallings went to State College of the New York-Penn League in 2012 and played 66 games, hitting .230 with 19 extra-base hits and 30 RBIs. In 2013, he moved up to High-A Bradenton of the Florida State League for the first of two seasons. He hit .219 the first year in 78 games, with 24 extra-base hits, 45 walks and 36 runs scored. Stallings batted .241, with 11 doubles and four homers in 68 games for Bradenton in 2014. He moved up Altoona of the Double-A Eastern League in 2015 and hit .275 in 75 games, with a .683 OPS that was two points higher than his previous season. In 2016, he played his first of four straight seasons in which he split the year between Triple-A Indianapolis of the International League and the Pirates. He hit just .214 in 80 games with Indianapolis in 2016, while getting into five games for the Pirates. Stallings bumped that average up to .301 in Indianapolis in 2017, though he still played just five games with the Pirates. He saw slightly more time in Pittsburgh in 2018, getting into 14 games. His big break came in 2019 when Elias Diaz was out for the beginning of the season, then Francisco Cervelli suffered injuries throughout the season. Stallings played 71 games that year and hit .262 with six homers and 13 RBIs. He became the starter in the shortened 2020 season and played 42 of the 60 games, hitting .248 with three homers and 18 RBIs. He won the Gold Glove in 2021 (some sources rated him as the best defensive player in baseball), and hit .246 in 112 games, with 20 doubles, eight homers, 53 RBIs and 49 walks. After the season, he was traded to the Miami Marlins for three players. In 249 games with the Pirates, he hit .254 with 82 runs scored, 17 homers and 95 RBIs.

Chris Jakubauskas, pitcher for the 2010 Pirates. He attended three colleges, including the University of Oklahoma. Jakubauskas began his pro career by pitching five years in Independent ball after going undrafted out of college. He was a first baseman in college, but he played the position just once in pro ball. He entered pro ball via a tryout without pitching once since he graduated high school. He required Tommy John surgery during his time in independent ball and he served as a high school coach during his recovery time. He debuted in the Frontier League with Florence, playing the 2003-04 seasons with the team. He did not do well during that time, posting a 5.11 ERA in 100.1 innings in 2003, followed by a 7.50 ERA in 24 innings in 2004. In 2005, he played for Ohio Valley of the Frontier League, where he improved to a 3.34 ERA in 70 innings. In 2006, Jakubauskas played in the Global Baseball League for Fullerton and he went 8-1, 3.09 in 96 innings. He started the 2007 season with Lincoln of the American Association (Independent ball at the time) and went 6-0, 2.42 in seven starts. He signed with the Seattle Mariners and struggled in Double-A (West Tennessee of the Southern League), going 0-4, 4.94 in 51 innings.

In 2008, Jakubauskas made one scoreless start in High-A, striking out seven batters in 2.2 innings. He also spent time back in Double-A, posting an 0.83 ERA in six starts. The rest of the year was spent with Triple-A Tacoma of the Pacific Coast League, where he went 5-1, 2.59 in 55.2 innings, while playing in a very hitter-friendly park. He played winter ball in Venezuela over the off-season and had a 5.16 ERA in 12 starts. The 2009 season was spent almost exclusively in the leagues, where he made eight starts and 27 relief appearances. He had just one minor league outing. He was already 30 years old by the time he made the majors. In 93 innings, Jakubauskas had a 6-7, 5.32 record for the Mariners.

On November 20, 2009, the Pirates picked up Jakubauskas off on waivers. He pitched just one game for the Pirates, starting on April 24, 2010, and he only faced four batters. After giving up a lead-off single, followed by two outs, Lance Berkman hit a line drive that hit Jakubauskas in the head, and he needed to be removed from the game. That was his last game for Pittsburgh. He missed most of the season with a concussion, though he also suffered a groin injury during his comeback attempt in the minors and he was limited to 40.2 innings spread out over three teams. Jakubauskas was granted free agency after the season and he signed with the Baltimore Orioles the following February. He spent most of the 2011 season in the majors and pitched 33 games (six starts) for the Orioles, posting a 5.72 ERA in 72.1 innings. Jakubauskas spent the 2012 season in the minors, playing for the Arizona Diamondbacks and Toronto Blue Jays. He spent the 2013 season in Triple-A, playing for the Milwaukee Brewers and Cleveland Indians, then played winter ball that off-season in Venezuela before retiring.

Glenn Wilson, outfielder for the 1988-89 and 1993 Pirates. He was a first round draft pick in 1980 out of Sam Houston State University, taken 18th overall by the Detroit Tigers. He debuted in the majors just 22 months after signing. He went right to Double-A after signing, playing 77 games for Montgomery of the Southern League. He hit .264 with a .712 OPS during that time.  In 1981, he remained in the Southern League, though the Tigers affiliate moved to Birmingham, where he hit .306 in 124 games, with 77 runs scored, 24 doubles, six triples, 18 homers and 82 RBIs. He also played ten games for Evansville of the Triple-A American Association that season, then went to Evansville for part of the 1892 season, though he began his big league career with the 1982 Tigers. In 84 games with Detroit that season, he hit .292 with 15 doubles, 12 homers, 34 RBIs and 39 runs scored. For the 1983 Tigers, Wilson batted .268 in 144 games, with 25 doubles, six triples, 11 homers and 65 RBIs. Most of his time as a rookie was spent in center field, but he moved to right field in 1983. He then played four seasons for the Philadelphia Phillies after they acquired him in a four-player deal near the end of Spring Training in 1984. That was unfortunate for Wilson, as the Tigers won the World Series that year. He hit .240 with a .649 OPS in 132 games for the 1984 Phillies, while seeing most of his time in left field.

In 1985, Wilson made his only All-Star appearance, and even received mild MVP support. He hit .275 with 73 runs scored, 39 doubles, 14 homers, and a career high 102 RBIs. He played 161 games that season, including 154 starts in right field. For the 1986 Phillies, he batted 271 in 155 games, with 70 runs scored, 84 RBIs, 30 doubles and a career high 15 homers. His 42 walks that season were also a career high. In his final season with the Phillies in 1987, Wilson batted .264 in 154 games, with 55 runs scored, 21 doubles, 14 homers and 54 RBIs. On December 9, 1987, he was part of a five-player trade between the Phillies and the Seattle Mariners. His time in Seattle was brief.

Wilson came to the Pirates in July of 1988 in exchange for young outfielder Darnell Coles. Just over a year later, the Pirates traded Wilson to the Houston Astros for outfielder Billy Hatcher. Wilson was hitting .250 with three homers in 78 games before joining the Pirates in 1988, then batted .270 with two homers and 15 RBIs in 37 games after the trade. In 1989 before the deal, he was batting .282 in 100 games, with 42 runs scored, 20 doubles, nine homers and 49 RBIs. After the deal, he hit just .216 in 28 games with the Astros, though he managed to drive in 15 runs. He remained in Houston for the 1990 season and batted .245 in 118 games, with 14 doubles, ten homers and 55 RBIs. After spending 1991 in the minors with the Atlanta Braves (29 games), and then not playing at all in 1992, Wilson returned to the Pirates as a free agent in 1993 and spent most of the year with Triple-A Buffalo. He was up in the majors for ten games in late May/early June and he had a .143 batting average, in what ended up being his final season of pro ball. He played 147 games total for Pittsburgh over three seasons, hitting .274 with 11 homers and 64 RBIs.  He spent a total of ten seasons in the majors, hitting .265 with 451 runs scored, 209 doubles, 98 homers and 521 RBIs in 1,201 games.  Wilson led all National League right fielders in assists three times and also all NL outfielders in assists thrice. During the 1985 season, he led NL right fielders in putouts, range factor, assists, errors and double plays.

Lonnie Smith, outfielder for the 1993 Pirates. During his 17-year career in the majors, he played in the World Series five times with four different teams. He was on the winning side with the 1980 Philadelphia Phillies, 1982 St Louis Cardinals and 1985 Kansas City Royals. Smith played 1,613 games over his 17 seasons, hitting .288 with 909 runs scored, 273 doubles, 98 homers, 533 RBIs, 623 walks and 370 stolen bases. From 1982-84, he led the league in hit-by-pitches every season, getting plunked nine times each year. During the 1989 season, he led the National League with a .415 OBP. He hit 21 homers that year, more than double any of his other season outputs.

Smith was a first round pick of the Phillies in 1974 out of high school, taken third overall. He wasted no time signing his deal and moved quickly through the minor league season, getting to Triple-A just 22 months later. He played that first season in 1974 at Auburn of the short-season New York-Penn League, where he hit .286 with 19 extra-base hits and 52 walks in 61 games, giving him a .429 OBP. He would top that the next season with Spartanburg of the Class-A Western Carolinas League, where he batted .323 in 131 games, with 96 walks, leading to a .445 OBP. He scored 114 runs that season, with 34 extra-base hits and 56 stolen bases. That led to him jumping to Triple-A (Oklahoma City of the American Association), though his fast pace slowed down and stalled for a time. Despite hitting .308, with 93 runs scored, 26 steals, and an .835 OPS in 134 games at age 20 in 1976, he didn’t debut in the majors until September of 1978. Even then, it was just a trial and he spent the full season in Triple-A in 1979 before coming back for a second September call-up. Smith hit .277 in 125 games in 1977, with 91 runs scored, 28 extra-base hits and 45 stolen bases for Oklahoma City. In 1978, he batted .315, with 103 runs scored, 32 extra-base hits, 66 steals (in 85 attempts) and 79 walks in 125 games. He played 17 games that year, though he batted just eight times, going 0-for-4 with four walks, six runs scored, and four steals in four attempts.

In 1979, Smith hit .330 in 110 games for Oklahoma City, collecting 42 extra-base hits and 34 steals, while scoring 106 runs. He played just 17 games with the Phillies again, this time getting 31 plate appearances, though all he could muster was a .427 OPS. The Phillies gave him 331 plate appearances/298 at-bats in 1980 and he responded by putting up a .339 average in 100 games, with 69 runs scored and 33 stolen bases. That was followed by a .324 average in 62 games during the strike-shortened 1981 season. He had 21 steals, 40 runs scored and an impressive .874 OPS. After the season, he was traded to the Cardinals in a deal that involved five players and three teams. In 1982, he hit .307, scored 120 runs, drove in 69 runs and stole 68 bases, finishing second in the NL MVP voting. He set a career high with 35 doubles, while adding eight triples and eight homers. It ended up being his only All-Star appearance, though he had two more years in which he received mild MVP support. Smith batted .321 during the World Series and scored six runs in seven games. In 1983, he hit .321 in 130 games, with 83 runs scored, 44 extra-base hits and 43 stolen bases. The next year saw Smith suffer a major slump. His average dropped 71 points down to .250 in 145 games. He was still productive, with 77 runs scored, 50 steals and 70 walks, but it was his first full season with an OPS under .800, and it wasn’t even close to that mark (.691).

Smith started off 1985 around the same pace, putting up a .700 OPS in 28 games. The Cardinals traded him to the Royals mid-season in 1985, then watched him hit .333 against them in the World Series. He didn’t do well during the season though, finishing with a .690 OPS for the year, and a .687 mark in 120 games after the trade. The highlight was another big season for steals, pilfering 52 bags in 65 attempts. He rebounded a bit with the 1986 Royals, hitting .287 in 134 games, with 80 runs scored, 40 extra-base hits and 26 steals. Despite being a veteran with solid results, he spent part of the 1987-88 seasons in the minors. Smith hit .251 in 48 games with the 1987 Royals, posting a .715 OPS. With the 1988 Atlanta Braves, he hit .237 in 43 games, and he stole just four bases. He rebounded in an impressive fashion in 1989 when he led the league in OBP. In 134 games, he hit .315 with 89 runs scored, 34 doubles, 21 homers, 79 RBIs, 25 steals and 76 walks, which led to an 11th place finish in the MVP voting. He batted .305 in 135 games the next year, with 72 runs scored, 45 extra-base hits, and 58 walks. In 1991, Smith hit .275 in 122 games for the Braves, with 58 runs scored, 55 walks, and a .771 OPS. In his final season in Atlanta before joining the Pirates, he batted .247 in 84 games, while seeing most of his time off of the bench.

Smith had played 15 years in the majors before signing as a free agent with the Pirates in January of 1993. He hit .286 in 94 games for Pittsburgh and posted an .864 OPS, spending most of his time of defense in left field. In September of 1993, the Pirates traded Smith to the Baltimore Orioles for two minor leaguers who never made it, Stan Cameron and Terry Farrar. He finished out the season by hitting .208 in nine games, though he had eight walks, two homers and eight runs scored. In his final season in the majors, he batted .203 in 35 games for the Orioles. His career ended with the 1994 strike, though he was probably nearing the end of his time with a .588 OPS at that point. Smith played 63 playoff games, which was an impressive total back when they only had two rounds. He hit .278 in the postseason, with 28 runs scored, four homers and 17 RBIs. Surprisingly, he was just 8-for-17 in stolen base attempts.

Bob Hall, pitcher for the 1953 Pirates. He debuted in pro ball in 1942 at 18 years old, pitching nine games for Winston-Salem of the Class-B Piedmont League. He then missed the next three years while serving during WWII. Hall was originally part of the Detroit Tigers system. His return in 1946 was limited to seven games total between two teams, mostly spent with Williamsport of the Class-A Eastern League. He went 15-7 for Vancouver of the Class-B Western International League in 1947, though it came with a 5.21 ERA in 235 innings. He had 173 walks and 206 strikeouts. He moved up to the Triple-A Pacific Coast League in 1948 with Seattle and went 7-11, 3.96 in 134 innings, which earned him time with the Boston Braves. He was acquired by Boston via trade after the 1948 season. Hall spent the entire 1949-50 seasons in the majors and remained Braves property through the end of the 1952 season. He had a 6-4, 4.36 record as a rookie in 1949, with 74.1 innings pitched over six starts and 25 relief appearances. In 1950, he pitched 50.1 innings over four starts and 17 relief outings. Hall went 0-2, 6.97, with 33 walks and 22 strikeouts. He split the 1951 season between Milwaukee of the American Association and Seattle of the PCL, combining to go 9-12, 3.90 in 196 innings.

Hall split the 1952 season between Seattle and Sacramento, also of the PCL, though he pitched just four games for the latter team. He went 14-11, 3.28 in 203 innings in 1952. Seattle purchased his contract from the Braves just six weeks before the Pirates selected him in the Rule 5 draft in December of 1952. The 1953 Pirates were a very bad team, going 50-104, and Hall had his struggles. He went 3-12, 5.39 in 17 starts and 20 relief appearances, throwing a total of 152 innings. On June 23rd, he threw his only career shutout, and it came on the road against the Braves. He returned to the minors in 1954 and played three more seasons in the Pacific Coast League before retiring. He played for four different teams during the 1954-56 seasons, including another stint in Seattle. His Major League record finished at 9-18, 5.40 in 276.2 innings over 27 starts and 62 relief outings. He wasn’t much better in the minors, going 70-88, 4.20 over nine seasons.  He remained Pirates property until June 22, 1954 when he was sold outright to Seattle.

The Trade

On this date in 1982, the Pirates traded four players to the New York Yankees for outfielder Lee Mazzilli. He was just 28 years old at the time of the trade but he was two years removed from his last good season, when he hit .280 with 76 RBIs and 41 stolen bases for the 1980 New York Mets. In 1982, he played for both the Yankees and Texas Rangers, hitting .251 with 34 RBIs in 95 games. The trade worked out well for the Pirates in the sense that three of the four players they gave up never reached the majors. Tim Burke was the fourth player and he was a reliever who didn’t make the big leagues until 1985, two years after the Yankees had traded him to the Montreal Expos. The Pirates would have been better off with him over Mazzilli, but not by any huge margin. His best seasons were all before the Pirates were winning pennants.

Mazzilli played 3 1/2 seasons in Pittsburgh before he was released in the middle of the 1986 season. He was used quite often as a pinch-hitter with the Pirates, though he also got time in at 1B/LF/CF as well. The choice to keep him around as a pinch-hitter after 1983 was an interesting one because he had just six hits in 49 pinch-hit appearances that year. He was hardly any better in 1984 in the role, hitting just .188 in 38 games as a pinch-hitter, but the Pirates persistence to use him that way paid off finally in 1985 (sort of, they still lost 105 games). He started just 15 times all season, but in 72 pinch-hit appearances he hit .286 with 15 walks for a .437 OBP. He played 61 games for the Pirates in 1986 before his release, with 48 of those games off the bench. All told, he hit .244 in 373 games with Pittsburgh. Mazzilli played 1,475 games in his 14-year career, 415 of them in the pinch-hit role.

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