Hall of Famer Dick Williams Dead at 82 - NBC Bay Area

Hall of Famer Dick Williams Dead at 82

Williams led the Oakland A's to two World Series titles in the 1970s.



    Hall of Famer Dick Williams Dead at 82
    Getty Images
    Hall of Fame inductee Dick Williams speaks to the media during a press conference at the Cooperstown Central School during the Baseball Hall of Fame weekend on July 26, 2008 in Cooperstown, New York.

    Not only did Dick Williams guide the Oakland A's to two World Series championships, but he also did it while managing one of the more flamboyant teams in the live-ball era.

    Hey, it was the 70s, right? So, managing a pitcher who tossed a game -- a no-hitter, no less -- while tripping on acid was just something that happened, you know? Dealing with Reggie Jackson's ego before he was just an All-Star outfielder and became Mr October with the Yankees? Did do.

    He even managed to "manage" the team into growing mustaches, to counteract the individualistic Jackson's 'stache during spring training, 1972.

    Williams is noted for taking underperforming teams and turning them around, usually with quickness. He did it in Oakland, Boston, Montreal and San Diego. 

    Having clashed with A's outspoken owner Charley Finley on a few occasions, Williams told ESPN, "His middle name was Oscar, but he said it's Charles O., for owner, Finley."

    Another legend has it that Finley called the dugout so many times during a game that, toward the end of the game, the trainer picked up the phone and told Williams Finley was on the line.

    "Tell him I'm not here," Williams replied.

    Despite those run-ins, Williams still chose to represent the Oakland A's cap in his Hall of Fame bust.

     His managerial record was 1571-1451 in 21 years of managing. He managed his last game only 56 games into the 1988 season.