5th Free-agent pitcher Frank Tanana, 4-10 for Boston last season, signs a 2-year contract with Texas.
9th Former Red Sox OF Tony Conigliaro, in Boston to interview for a broadcasting position, suffers a massive heart attack while being driven to the airport by his brother Billy and lapses into a coma. The 37-year-old Tony C. will remain hospitalized until March 2nd.
12th In the January draft, the Blue Jays use the #1 pick on OF Kash Beauchamp and the Cubs follow by taking C Troy Afenir. Huh! The Twins, picking 3rd, take Kirby Puckett. The Reds choose Randy Myers on the first round while the Mets select Kal Daniels on the 3rd round. The 433rd pick overall is John Cangelosi, taken by the White Sox.
13th Hank Aaron and Frank Robinson become the 12th and 13th players elected to the Hall of Fame by the BBWAA in their first year of eligibility. Aaron falls 9 votes shy of becoming the first-ever unanimous selection, and his 97.8 election percentage is 2nd only to Ty Cobb’s 98.2 percent in the inaugural 1936 election.
22nd Free-agent OF Reggie Jackson ends his tumultuous 5 seasons as a Yankee by signing a reported 4-year contract with the California Angels for nearly $1 million per year.
27th Philadelphia sends veteran SS Larry Bowa and minor league infielder Ryne Sandberg to the Cubs in exchange for SS Ivan DeJesus. Cubs manager insisted that the Phils throw in Sandberg because they were getting a shortstop seven years younger than the one they were sending to Chicago. Bowa is quoted as saying, “Never mind me. I can’t believe the Phillies gave up on Sandberg. He’ll play for the Cubs right now. A good kid, a big kid. Only thing is, he’s real quiet. We’re gonna have to get him to talk more in Chicago.”
28th The Orioles trade 3B Doug DeCinces and minor league P Jeff Schneider to the Angels for OF Dan Ford.
29th Wayne Garland, baseball’s first millionaire free agent, is waived by the Indians with 5 seasons remaining on his 10-year contract. Garland was 3-7 with a 5.79 ERA in 1981.