William Charles Virdon, aka Bill Virdon, born June 9, 1931 in Hazel Park, Michigan and died November 23, 2021 in Springfield, Missouri, is an American outfield player and manager and instructor in Major League Baseball.
Named 1955 National League Rookie of the Year as a player, he was American League Manager of the Year in 1974.
Between 1955 and 1968, Bill Virdon played as a center fielder for the St. Louis Cardinals (with whom he was voted 1955 National League Rookie of the Year) and for the Pittsburgh Pirates, with whom he won the World Series in 1960 and won a golden glove for his defensive work at his position in 1962. He had been drafted before his entry into the majors by the New York Yankees, but they traded him to St. Louis in 1954 , in an exchange involving several players including the future member of the Hall of Fame of Baseball Enos Slaughter.
As manager, Virdon led the Pittsburgh Pirates (1972-1973), the New York Yankees (1974-1975), the Houston Astros (1975-1982) and the Montreal Expos (1983-1984). He led the 1972 Pirates to the National League East Division championship and the 1980 Astros to the same league West Division championship, but each time his team failed to reach the World Series. He was voted manager of the year in the American League in 1974 with the Yankees.
Bill Virdon lived in Springfield, Missouri, and is employed by the Pittsburgh Pirates as a special instructor for outfield players at training camps.
Notes and references
Sports-related resources: Baseball-reference.com (major league) Baseball-reference.com (minor league) Retrosheet Society for American Baseball Research
(en) Manager stats for Bill Virdon on baseball-reference.com. Baseball Portal