Having won six World Series titles over the course of his professional baseball career, Willie Randolph understands what it takes to succeed at the highest level. Randolph, who was a six-time All-Star second baseman, won back-to-back World Series with the New York Yankees in 1977 and 1978 and later as a base and bench coach for the Yankees he earned rings in 1996, 1998, 1999 and 2000
Raised in Brooklyn, New York, Randolph was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the seventh round of the 1972 amateur draft straight out of Samuel J. Tilden High School and debuted for the Pirates in 1975 before he was traded to the Yankees that offseason. The Yankees installed Randolph as their starting second baseman to start the 1976 season and he responded by earning an All-Star selection.
By 1978 Randolph had locked down the ‘two-hole’ atop the Yankees lineup and was considered one of the top second basemen in the American League thanks to his discerning eye at the plate and his strong work around the second base bag. Randolph never once struck out more times than he walked in any season, and while he never won a Gold Glove at second baseman he ranked among league leaders in fewest errors committed, assists, putouts and double plays turned.
Randolph turned in his finest offensive season in 1980 when he made his third All-Star Team, stole 30 bases, set career highs with 99 runs scored and a .427 on base percentage, and also led the league with 119 walks. After 13 seasons in pin stripes Randolph signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers for the 1989 season and made his sixth and final AllStar appearance that season. After a trade to the Oakland Athletics part way through the 1990 season Randolph wrapped up his career with one-year stints with the Milwaukee Brewers and New York Metshaving compiled 2,210 hits, including 316 doubles, almost twice as many walks (1,243) and strikeouts (675) and a career .373 on-base percentage.
Randolph returned to the Yankees organization as Assistant General Manager for the 1994 season before he transitioned to third base coach (1994 to 2003) and ultimately to bench coach under Joe Torre (2004) before he earned the opportunity to manage his childhood favorite New York Mets beginning in 2005. Under Randolph the Mets won a National League-best 97 games and their division in 2006, while also advancing to the N.L. Championship Series. The Mets’ record during Randolph’s three-plus seasons at the helm was 302-253, but after a slow start in 2008 Randolph was let go.
He spent the next two seasons as Brewers bench coach and 2011 as bench coach and third base coach for the Baltimore Orioles before stepping away from coaching at the major league level. In 2013 Randolph was the third base coach for Team USA in the World Baseball Classic, and in 2017 he will once again be on the Team USA staff under manager Jim Leyland. Randolph currently resides in New Jersey with his wife.
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