This Day in White Sox History: Allen walks out

This Day in White Sox History: Allen walks out
In 1974, Dick Allen retired from baseball with two weeks left in the season. The Phillies ended up coaxing Allen out of retirement.

September 14, 1952 - In a 17 inning game in Chicago, Sox pitcher Saul Rogovin struck out 14 Red Sox in 15 innings of work. But it was Luis Aloma who got the decision as the White Sox won 4-3.

September 14, 1974 - Sox first baseman, Dick Allen called a team meeting and announced he was retiring from baseball. Allen, the controversial slugger, would still win the American League home run title even though he would miss the final two weeks of the season. Allen was fighting bad injuries to his shoulder and leg from previous seasons but the way he ‘walked out’ on the Sox left a bad taste in the mouths of many fans.

Sox GM Roland Hemond would then trade his rights to the Atlanta Braves for catcher Jim Essian. Allen would return and see action with the Phillies and A’s before really retiring in 1977.

I asked Chuck Tanner, Dick's manager what he remembered about that day and if he tried to change Allen's mind.

“No, I’d never try to talk a player out of something like that and no I didn’t know ahead of time he was leaving. He just came into my office with his spikes tied together and hung over his shoulder like you used to do as a kid and said, ‘Lefty, that’s it, I’m done.’ I told him that I appreciated how hard he played for me and that I thought he had the greatest year anyone that I managed, ever had. I knew he was really hurting. Dick had a very bad shoulder, he was coming off that broken leg and he was tired. He was just tired of dealing with things like the media. There were a number of games where he shouldn’t even have been playing but he was out there anyway.” 
September 14, 1997 - Carlton Fisk has his uniform #72 retired in a ceremony before the Sox took on Cleveland. The game was also remembered for manager Terry Bevington going to the mound to change pitchers...expect for the fact that no one was warming up in the Sox bullpen when he called for the change!


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