The baseball world is in mourning in the wake of former New York Mets manager Frank Howard’s death. The ex-player and coach passed away yesterday, Oct. 30 at 87 years old due to complications from a stroke.
Frank Howard Helped Lay Foundation For Mets’ 1986 World Series Run
Matt Schudel of The Washington Post broke the news:
“Mr. Howard, who twice led the American League in home runs and remained an enduring favorite of Washington’s disenfranchised baseball fans, died Oct. 30 at a hospital in Aldie, Va. He was 87,” Schudel said. “The cause was complications from a stroke, said his daughter Catherine Braun.”
Howard joined the Mets as a coach in 1982. He took over as manager for George Bamberger 46 games into the 1983 MLB season. At the time of his arrival, the Mets were 16-30 and struggling in the NL East. Under Howard, they went 52-64 and finished last in the division.
He remained with the Mets until 1984, departing just before the team experienced a meteoric rise to a World Series crown in 1986. From 1983 to 1984, the Mets improved by 22 wins and began laying the groundwork for soon-to-be ascension to a championship.
He would return to New York as a coach from 1994 to 1996 before retiring from coaching in 1999.
Howard Succeeded as a Player Prior to His Coaching Career
As a player, Howard made a splash upon entering the league as a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers, winning the NL Rookie of the Year award in 1960. He helped the Dodgers win their third World Series crown in 1963.
After moving to the Washington Senators (who later became the Texas Rangers), Howard led the American League in home runs twice (1968, 1970), RBIs once (1970), and was named to four consecutive All-Star games between 1968 and 1971.
Once his playing days were behind him, Howard coached for several teams before fixating himself with the Mets, including the Milwaukee Brewers and San Diego Padres. He also coached for the Seattle Mariners, New York Yankees, and Tampa Bay Rays, rounding out a lengthy career in the majors.