Dave Stapleton (staplda01)
David Leslie Stapleton
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 1", Weight 178 lb.
- School University of South Alabama
- Debut May 30, 1980
- Final Game October 5, 1986
- Born January 16, 1954 in Fairhope, AL USA
Dave Stapleton is most famous for sitting on the bench in extra innings during Game 6 of the the 1986 World Series while a member of the Boston Red Sox. Manager John McNamara had used him regularly in the regular season as a late-inning defensive substitute for Bill Buckner, whose bad knees made him a defensive liability. However, with the Red Sox holding a two-run lead over the New York Mets and about to clinch the World Championship, McNamara kept Buckner in the game. As fate would have it, Mookie Wilson hit a ground ball between Billy Buck's legs to drive in the winning run that capped the Mets' improbable comeback.
Stapleton had a great rookie season taking over for an injured Jerry Remy as the Sox's second baseman in 1980, hitting .321 with 33 doubles in 106 games. He finished second behind Joe Charboneau in the Rookie of he Year Award vote after the season. He then became a utility player after Remy returned to action. In 1981, he played regularly without logging more than 33 games at any position. His batting average fell down a notch in every season he played for the Red Sox after his rookie year. By 1986, he hit a mere .128 in 39 games and was almost exclusively used for defensive purposes.
- Tyler Ash: "Dave Stapleton", in Bill Nowlin and Leslie Heaphy, ed.: The 1986 Boston Red Sox: There Was More Than Game 6, SABR, Phoenix, AZ, 2016. pp. 203-205. ISBN 978-1-943816-19-4