Continuing down the path of honoring its own storied history, the Oakland Athletics have announced that the C Gate at the Oakland Coliseum will be renamed the Jim “Catfish” Hunter Gate prior to Saturday’s game against the New York Yankees.
The ceremony, which will include appearances by Hunter’s widow and children, along with several former teammates — Bert Campaneris, Joe Rudi and Gene Tenace among others — and former A’s radio broadcaster Monte Moore, is set to begin at 9:30 a.m.
Catfish Hunter spent 10 seasons as a member of the Athletics organization, three in Kansas City and seven in Oakland, before spending his final five big league seasons with the Yankees. While in the green and gold, Hunter garnered five All-Star selections, four 20-win seasons — including a league-leading 25 in 1974 — and a Cy Young Award (1974). He was an integral part of the A’s World Series three-peat in 1972-74, and is one of five players to have their jersey number retired by the club.
Hunter was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1987. His play is described on his Hall of Fame plaque:
“The bigger the game, the better he pitched. One of Baseball’s most dominant pitchers from 1970-76, winning over 20 five straight times. Compiled 224-166 mark with 3.26 ERA before arm trouble ended career at age 33. Hurled perfect game vs. Twins in 1968. 1974 AL Cy Young Award winner. 5-3 in 12 World Series games.”
The dedication of the “Jim ‘Catfish’ Hunter Gate” comes following the naming of the “Rickey Henderson Field.” Among the five whose jersey numbers have been retired by the organization, Reggie Jackson, Dennis Eckersley and Rollie FIngers have yet to receive similar honors.