BALT 97-65 BOST 89-73 DET 85-77 NY 80-82 MIL 74-88 CLEV 71-91
California's Nolan Ryan went into his last game needing 16 strikeouts against the Twins to top Sandy Koufax' single-season big-league record. The game went into the 11th inning and Ryan, whose cramped right leg had to be massaged by a doctor and a trainer between innings, struck out Rich Reese and got No. 16. With the record 383 strikeouts, 21 wins and two no-hitters, Ryan seems a good bet for the Cy Young Award. On Saturday night his teammate and fellow righthander Bill Singer joined him in the 20-win class.
The Rangers' Jim Bibby went the distance in a 5-4 win over Kansas City, giving him 11 complete games, matching last year's team output. Jeff Burroughs finished his first full major league season with 30 home runs. " Burroughs is a meal ticket," said Manager Billy Martin. "You're looking at a potential of 50 home runs a season. Not in the future either. Next year." One of the main reasons for Texas finishing with the worst record in either division was Rico Carty's failure to hit—he was batting .231 when the club shipped him to the Cubs.
Paul Splittorff won his 20th game, beating Chicago, becoming the first pitcher in Kansas City's 18-year major league history to reach that level. John Mayberry reached 100 RBIs for the second straight year.
Third-place Minnesota finished with a 14-4 record against Oakland and might have had a healthy edge on more clubs if slugger Harmon Killebrew had not been hurt, missing almost 90 games. There were a few other ifs, but not at second base. Rod Carew won the AL batting championship with .350 and also led in triples with 11 and total hits, 203.
One pleasant note for Chicago rooters: Carlos May hit .359 for the month of September and finished at .268. Champion Oakland's pluses included a healthier than usual gate. The A's drew 7,422 fans Sunday to go over a million in attendance—barely.
OAK 94-68 KC 88-74 MINN 81-81 CAL 79-83 CHI 77-85 TEX 57-105