Gary Peters
Peters in 1965
Born: (1937-04-21)April 21, 1937
Grove City, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Died: January 26, 2023(2023-01-26) (aged 85)
Sarasota, Florida, U.S.
Batted: Left
Threw: Left
MLB debut
September 10, 1959, for the Chicago White Sox
Last MLB appearance
September 23, 1972, for the Boston Red Sox
MLB statistics
Win–loss record124–103
Earned run average3.25
Career highlights and awards

Gary Charles Peters (April 21, 1937 – January 26, 2023) was an American professional baseball player. He was a Major League Baseball pitcher who played on two major league teams for 14 seasons, from 1959 through 1972. He was one of the best-hitting pitchers of his era.

Major league baseball

The Chicago White Sox signed Peters as an amateur free agent in 1956 after he graduated from Grove City College. After four brief call-ups, he got a pitching job on the White Sox in 1963, winning 19 games (19–8) and the American League Rookie of the Year Award. A left-handed pitcher, he led the American League in earned run average in 1963 and 1966, with the most wins in 1964. In 1965, he was limited by a bad back. Tommy John, who lived with him part of the year, recalled that Peters had to sleep on a mattress on the floor and could not stand up straight in the mornings.[1] He led in fielding average as a pitcher in 1968. He stayed in the White Sox organization through the 1969 season and was traded to the Boston Red Sox, where he spent the last three years of his playing career.

Peters was named to the American League All-Star roster in 1964 and 1967, and finished in the top 10 in the Most Valuable Player voting in 1963, 1964, and 1967.[2] He had a .222 lifetime batting average and hit 19 home runs and 102 RBI. He was frequently used as a pinch-hitter, once winning a game with a pinch-hit home run. On May 5, 1968, Peters hit a grand slam in Comiskey Park, helping the White Sox to a 5–1 victory over the New York Yankees. He was also used as a pinch-runner.

Peters was a big practical joker. Once, when the White Sox went to play the Los Angeles Angels, they found themselves at the same hotel as the Yankees, who had not left for their next destination yet. Obtaining the key to Joe Pepitone's room, Peters snuck into the hitter's room in the middle of the night and started jumping on the bed and screaming, scaring the hitter tremendously until Pepitone finally got the lights turned on and figured out what had happened.[1] Another time, he caught a baby octopus while skindiving and threw it at Ed Stroud in the locker room the next day.[1]

On September 30, 2000, the Chicago White Sox announced that Gary Peters and 26 other former and active White Sox players were members of the Chicago White Sox All-Century Team.

Personal life and death

On January 26, 2023, it was announced that Peters had died at the age of 85.[3][4]

Major League stats

Years Games W L ShO IP CG R ER SO ERA Fld%
14 359 124 103 23 2081 79 847 751 1420 3.25 .966

MLB awards

MLB achievements

See also


  1. ^ a b c John and Valenti, p. 95
  2. ^ "Gary Peters". Retrieved 2009-04-26.
  3. ^ "Chicago White Sox on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2023-01-26.
  4. ^ "Gary Peters, 1963 AL Rookie of the Year, dies at 85". Sports Naut. 26 January 2023. Retrieved 27 January 2023.