Butch Hobson, 3B, #4 (1975-1980)
623 G, 561 H, 94 HR, 358 RBI, 10 SB, .252 AVG, .296 OBP, .439 SLG
Clell Lavern “Butch” Hobson (born August 17, 1951 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama) is a former third baseman and manager in Major League Baseball. Hobson played for the Boston Red Sox (1975-80), California Angels (1981) and New York Yankees (1982). He batted and threw right-handed. He was an ‘all-out’ player which caused him many injuries throughout his baseball career. After retiring, he managed the Pawtucket Red Sox and the Boston Red Sox. Currently he is the manager of the Nashua Pride in the independent Atlantic League. He won the International League Manager of the Year award in 1991.
Hobson was a star football player for the University of Alabama team. Selected by the Red Sox in the 1973 amateur draft, he made his debut on Septermber 7, 1975. However, it wasn’t until June 1976, that he played his inaugural game at Fenway Park—a contest that saw him slug a double and an inside-the-park homer. Over the next four seasons, Hobson’s all-out style of play made him a fan favorite. His grit also produced some impressive results: in 1977 he set team season records for a third baseman with 30 home runs and 112 RBI. He finished 23rd in voting for the 1977 American League MVP for leading League in Strikeouts (162) and having .265 Batting Average (157 for 593), 77 Runs, 33 Doubles, 5 Triples, 30 Home Runs, 112 RBI, 5 Stolen Bases, 27 Walks, .300 On base percentage, .489 Slugging Percentage, 290 Total Bases, 10 Sacrifice Hits 3 Sacrifice Flies and 4 Intentional Walks in 159 Games.
In 1978, Hobson hit 17 home runs with 80 RBI. However, his 43 errors in 1978 were the most by any AL fielder, and his .899 fielding average was the first below .900 by a regular in 62 years. After a solid start in 1978, Hobson was sidelined by hamstring and elbow injuries. He rebounded to belt 28 homers and drive in 93 runs in 1979, but Hobson says his arm never felt the same after the previous season’s woes. Following a sub-par 1980, he was dealt to the California Angels, along with Rick Burleson, in the same trade that brought Carney Lansford and Mark Clear to Boston. In an eight-year career with the Red Sox, Hobson hit a .248 batting average with 98 home runs and 397 RBI in 738 games.
After the trade to California in 1981, the hard-nosed slugger suffered a shoulder separation. Just prior to the 1982 season, Hobson was traded to the Yankees where he played just 30 games before being demoted. The veteran infielder would play three more years for the Yankees Triple-A club in Columbus before retiring as a player.
Soon after his playing days, Hobson started coaching in the Red Sox organization where he swiftly rose through the ranks to become the club’s big league manager in 1992. Unfortunately, the Bosox teams under his reign were hampered by injuries and failed to qualify for the post-season, and he was let go after the 1994 season. As a manager, he posted a 207-232 record for the Red Sox from 1992-94.
In 1996, he landed a job managing the Phillies Triple-A squad in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. It was during his tenure there that one of his darkest moments in baseball occurred when he was arrested on a cocaine possession charge. The incident marked a turning point in his life. Rehired by the Red Sox to manage their single-A team in Sarasota in 1998, Hobson longed to be closer to his family in Vermont. In 1999, he jumped at the opportunity to manage the Atlantic League’s Nashua Pride.
Player biography by Karen
Sunday, February 11, 2007
Butch Hobson, 3B, #4 (1975-1980)