William Charles Virdon (born June 9, 1931 in Hazel Park, Michigan) is a former outfielder, manager and coach in Major League Baseball. A premier defensive outfielder during his playing days (1955–65) as a center fielder for the St. Louis Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates (winning a Gold Glove in 1962), Virdon also had a long tenure in the major leagues as a manager, with the Pirates (1972–73), New York Yankees (1974–75), Houston Astros (1975–82), and Montreal Expos (1983–84). He was the American League Manager of the Year in 1974, his only full season working for the Yankees of George Steinbrenner. Bill also was named National League Manager of the Year in 1980 while with the Houston Astros.
Virdon initially signed with the Yankees, but he never played for the big league club. As a minor league prospect, he was traded to the Cardinals in a multi-player deal before the 1954 season for veteran outfielder Enos Slaughter, now a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame. After one more year of seasoning in the minors, Virdon joined the Cardinals in 1955 and was named National League Rookie of the Year. He was traded to Pittsburgh in May 1956.
A left-handed batter (who threw right-handed), Virdon's career batting average was .267 with 91 home runs during his 1,583-game NL career. He was the starting center fielder on the 1960 world champion Pirates, batting .241 in seven World Series games. His ground ball in Game 7 took a bad hop and struck Yankees shortstop Tony Kubek in the throat, enabling Virdon to reach base and the Pirates to mount a furious rally in a game (and series) eventually won by Bill Mazeroski's dramatic home run.
Bill Virdon being honored on June 19, 2010 at PNC Park
for his role on the Pirates' 1960 World Series Championship team.
As a manager, he led the Pirates to the 1972 NL East title, but the Buccos dropped the NLCS to the Cincinnati Reds when Pittsburgh pitcher Bob Moose unleashed a wild pitch in the final inning of Game 5, allowing the winning run to score. His 1980 Astros won the NL West championship, but fell to the Philadelphia Phillies in a five-game NLCS. His career managerial record, over all or parts of 13 seasons, was 995–921 (.519). He also served three different terms as a Pirates coach. He has the unusual distinction of having been replaced on two separate occasions by the manager he replaced; in Montreal (Jim Fanning) and in Pittsburgh (Danny Murtaugh).
Currently Bill lives in Springfield, Missouri, and serves as a special outfield instructor for the Pirates during spring training.
A part of US 63 BUS in West Plains, MO is also named Bill Virdon Boulevard. He was nicknamed "Quail" for his style of hits in the Major Leagues.
See also 
External links 
- 1958: Aaron, Mays, Robinson
- 1959: Aaron, Brandt, Mays
- 1960: Aaron, Mays, Moon
- 1961: Clemente, Mays, Pinson
- 1962: Clemente, Mays, Virdon
- 1963: Clemente, Flood, Mays
- 1964: Clemente, Flood, Mays
- 1965: Clemente, Flood, Mays
- 1966: Clemente, Flood, Mays
- 1967: Clemente, Flood, Mays
- 1968: Clemente, Flood, Mays
- 1969: Clemente, Flood, Rose
- 1970: Agee, Clemente, Rose
- 1971: Bo. Bonds, Clemente, W. Davis
- 1972: Cedeño, Clemente, W. Davis
- 1973: Bo. Bonds, Cedeño, W. Davis
- 1974: Bo. Bonds, Cedeño, Gerónimo
- 1975: Cedeño, Gerónimo, Maddox
- 1976: Cedeño, Gerónimo, Maddox
- 1977: Gerónimo, Maddox, Parker
- 1978: Maddox, Parker, Valentine
- 1979: Maddox, Parker, Winfield
- 1980: Dawson, Maddox, Winfield
- 1981: Baker, Dawson, Maddox
- 1982: Dawson, Maddox, Murphy
- 1983: Dawson, McGee, Murphy
- 1984: Dawson, Dernier, Murphy
- 1985: Dawson, McGee, Murphy
- 1986: Gwynn, McGee, Murphy
- 1987: E. Davis, Dawson, Gwynn
- 1988: E. Davis, Dawson, Van Slyke
- 1989: E. Davis, Gwynn, Van Slyke
- 1990: Ba. Bonds, Gwynn, Van Slyke
- 1991: Ba. Bonds, Gwynn, Van Slyke
- 1992: Ba. Bonds, Van Slyke, Walker
- 1993: Ba. Bonds, Grissom, Walker
- 1994: Ba. Bonds, Grissom, Lewis
- 1995: Finley, Grissom, Mondesí
- 1996: Ba. Bonds, Finley, Grissom
- 1997: Ba. Bonds, Mondesí, Walker
- 1998: Ba. Bonds, Jones, Walker
- 1999: Finley, Jones, Walker
- 2000: Edmonds, Finley, Jones
- 2001: Edmonds, Jones, Walker
- 2002: Edmonds, Jones, Walker
- 2003: Cruz, Edmonds, Jones
- 2004: Edmonds, Finley, Jones
- 2005: Abreu, Edmonds, Jones
- 2006: Beltrán, Cameron, Jones
- 2007: Beltrán, Jones, Francoeur/Rowand
- 2008: Beltrán, McLouth, Victorino
- 2009: Bourn, Kemp, Victorino
- 2010: Bourn, González, Victorino
- 2011: Ethier, Kemp, Parra
- 2012: González, Heyward, McCutchen
Home movie of Bill Virdon, centerfielder for the Pittsburgh Pirates, and later Pirate, Yankee, Astro, Expo manager, at the Polo Grounds circa 1956.
Bill Virdon talks about his playing days, the 1960 World Series with the Pirates, and his transition from player to manager on Sports & Torts with hosts Elli...
Bill Virdon - OSS Sitdown
Two time World Series Champion, Rookie of the Year, Gold Glover and Missouri Sports Hall of Famer Bill Virdon sat down with Justin Dougherty for this week's ...
Missouri State Reacts to 3rd Win in a Row
Part One of the morning sports report.
Missouri State's Pink Rink
The full process of how the Ice Bears turn their rink pink.
1960 World Series Game 1: Yankees vs Pirates
New York Yankees vs Pittsburgh Pirates @ Forbes Field Vern Law vs Art Ditmar Yankees Lineup Tony Kubek SS Hector Lopez LF Roger Maris RF Mickey Mantle CF Yog...
Pittsburgh Pirates DVD
Baseball fans everywhere will want to own this collection of exclusive interviews with the greatest Pirates legends of all time from the Ed Randall Talking B...
Opening Day 1972 Highlights - Pirates v Mets (Ellis v Seaver)
Happy Opening Day, Dock Ellis fans! 40 years ago, Dock pitched opening day at Shea against the Mets' Tom Seaver (who Dock called "Nancy," long story..). One ...
Bills Pirate video.wmv
Here's my pirate video for disney.
Tigers manager Jim Leyland say hi to ex-Lakeland Tigers Tom Berti & Mike Polvi, 3-23-12 @ Bradenton
On March 23, 2012 at Bradenton, Fla. - after the Detroit Tigers' 7-2 exhibition win over the Pittsburgh Pirates, I asked Tigers manager Jim Leyland about a c...
Sat, 04 May 2013 21:02:09 -0700
JOHNSTOWN — Bill Virdon can tap into a wide range of baseball topics when he is the featured speaker at the 20th annual AAABA Hall of Fame banquet. Virdon was part of two different eras of Pittsburgh Pirates championship teams. “It will be baseball,” ...
Mon, 13 May 2013 11:25:59 -0700
20,000 days since Pirates center fielder Bill Virdon has two assists in the seventh inning of a game against the Reds. 60,000 days since the Knickerbockers become the first team to wear uniforms for a game: straw hats, white shirts, and blue trousers.
Thu, 09 May 2013 20:06:48 -0700
This year former Pittsburgh Pirates manager Bill Virdon is the speaker. “He wanted the hall of fame to be something special,” Arcurio III said. “It started very small. For the past 20 years it's grown into an event where we have 500 people a year and ...
Hardball Times (blog)
Fri, 10 May 2013 01:11:54 -0700
That same day, Bill Virdon manages his first game. 15,000 days since the Cardinals trade Jerry Reuss to Houston for a pair of players. 20,000 days since the Pirates sign amateur free agent Willie Stargell. Good move. 50,000 days since George Hall of ...
Tue, 30 Apr 2013 20:04:42 -0700
As the Astros' skipper, Dierker's 435 wins ranks second in franchise history to Bill Virdon's 544. But he resigned after a fourth-straight NL Division Series loss after the 2001 season and his No. 49 uniform was retired in 2002. Dierker returned to the ...
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