Dave Boswell

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David Wilson Boswell

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Biographical Information[edit]

“He would do anything to win a ballgame... On the field, you loved playing behind him because you knew he was taking care of his guys. If anybody threw at somebody or something like that, well, there was going to be a response, believe me. He wasn’t afraid to get it done.” - Frank Quilici, 2012

Dave Boswell won 68 games during an eight-year big league career, spent mostly with the Minnesota Twins, but was out of baseball by his 27th birthday. Away from the diamond, he is best remembered for a bar fight with his manager, Billy Martin, that left Boswell unconscious.

Boswell began his pro career in the Twins chain in 1964 and, after going 11-13 between two minor league clubs, he earned a September call up to the majors. In four late-season starts, he went 2-0 with a 4.24 ERA. Splitting 1965 between the Minnesota rotation and bullpen, he posted a 6-5 record and went on to make one relief appearance in the 1965 World Series, which his club lost. Primarily a starter in 1966, he went 12-5 and led the American League with a .706 winning percentage. In the next two seasons, he won 14 and 10 games while posting earned run averages in the low 3.00s each year. Boswell had his finest year in 1969, going 20-12 with a 3.23 ERA and 190 strikeouts.

However, he made headlines in a bad way in August 1969 when he got into a fight with his manager, Martin, at the misnomered Lindell's AC in Detroit. As a result of the fight at the smoky little bar beloved by Detroit Tigers fans, reportedly scored 20-7 (as in, twenty stitches for Boswell and seven for Martin), Boswell was left unconscious in an alley. Nonetheless, he started Game 2 of the 1969 ALCS, giving up just one run before suffering an injury in the 10th and taking the loss.

Following that injury, Boswell was never the same pitcher. He went 3-7 with a 6.42 ERA for the Twins in 1970. He again got into a highly publicized fight while celebrating the team's division title that fall, requiring 23 stitches, and did not pitch in the postseason. Released in early 1971, he was signed by the Tigers, now managed by... you guessed it, Billy Martin! Dave lasted only 3 games before being released and catching on with the Baltimore Orioles, for whom he threw his last big league pitch that September.

Boswell died in 2012 at age 67.

Notable Achievements[edit]

  • AL Winning Percentage Leader (1966)
  • 15 Wins Seasons: 1 (1969)
  • 20 Wins Seasons: 1 (1969)
  • 200 Innings Pitched Seasons: 2 (1967 & 1969)
  • 200 Strikeouts Seasons: 1 (1969)

Further Reading[edit]

  • Gregory H. Wolf: "Dave Boswell", in Gregory H. Wolf, ed.: A Pennant for the Twin Cities: the 1965 Minnesota Twins, SABR, Phoenix, AZ, 2015, pp. 76-82. ISBN 978-1-943816-09-5

Related Sites[edit]