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Bill Russell

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William Ellis Russell

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[edit] Biographical Information

Bill Russell played shortstop for the Dodgers from 1972 to 1983, replacing legend Maury Wills early in the 1972 season. A steady player, Russell was sometimes criticized for making too many errors. The truth is, however, that the Dodger Stadium infield during those years was composed of crushed brick which gave it a beautiful red appearance but was very rough and produced many bad hops.

Russell was a three-time All-Star who played in four World Series, most notably the 1978 World Series where he hit .423.

Russell came up as the Dodgers' fourth outfielder in 1969-1970, playing mostly right field but also some center field. In 1971 he split his time largely between outfield and second base, and so it was only in his fourth major league season when he became an everyday shortstop. Davey Lopes, who was to become the Dodgers' second baseman, was also a minor league outfielder and the two of them were outfielders together on the 1970 Spokane Indians.

After his playing career, Russell managed the Dodgers for parts of three seasons (1996-1998). Because Walter Alston and Tommy Lasorda had each managed for so long, there was an expectation that Russell might also manage for 20 years, but the Dodgers were not disposed to allow that.

"Bill Russell, then, is really a historical one-of-a-kind, the only major league outfielder to convert to shortstop and have a solid career." -- Bill James, in The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract

[edit] Notable Achievements

  • 3-time NL All-Star (1973, 1976 & 1980)
  • Won a World Series with the the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1981
  • Post-season Appearances: 1 (1996, Wild Card)

Preceded by
Tommy Lasorda
Los Angeles Dodgers Manager
Succeeded by
Glenn Hoffman

[edit] Year-By-Year Managerial Record

Year Team League Record Finish Organization Playoffs Notes
1992 Albuquerque Dukes Pacific Coast League 65-78 8th Los Angeles Dodgers
1993 Albuquerque Dukes Pacific Coast League 71-72 5th Los Angeles Dodgers
1996 Los Angeles Dodgers National League 49-37 2nd Los Angeles Dodgers Lost NLDS replaced Tom Lasorda (41-35) on June 25
1997 Los Angeles Dodgers National League 88-74 2nd Los Angeles Dodgers
1998 Los Angeles Dodgers National League 36-38 -- Los Angeles Dodgers replaced by Glenn Hoffman on June 22
1999 Orlando Rays Southern League 70-68 5th Tampa Bay Devil Rays League Champs
2001 Shreveport Swamp Dragons Texas League 54-81 8th San Francisco Giants

[edit] Further Reading

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