Joaquin Andujar, a fiery pitcher with the St. Louis Cardinals in the 1980s who faced the Royals twice in the 1985 World Series, died Tuesday in his native Dominican Republic. He was 62.
Leonardo Matos Berrido, president of the Dominican Baseball League, said the cause was diabetes complications.
Andujar started his major-league career in the 1976 with the Houston Astros. He was dealt to the Cardinals in 1981.
Andujar was a two-time All-Star with the Cardinals. He had 20-win seasons in 1984 and ’85, led the National League in victories in ’84 and was a 15-game winner on the Cardinals World Series title team in ’82.
He won 21 games in 1985 for the NL champion Cardinals. He started the third game of the World Series against the Royals, which they won 6-1, and took the loss.
In game seven, with the Royals ahead 10-0 in the fifth inning, Cardinals manager Whitey Herzog sent Andujar to the mound for mop-up duty. Andujar gave up an RBI single to Frank White, then walked Jim Sundberg to load the bases. Andujar then was ejected from the game for arguing balls and strikes with home plate umpire Don Denkinger.
Andujar then took a baseball bat to a toilet in the visitors’ clubhouse restroom at Royals Stadium.
The Cardinals held a tribute to him Tuesday night before playing the Chicago Cubs in St. Louis.
“Joaquin was just a big personality,” said Cardinals broadcaster Al Hrabosky, a former relief pitcher who was known as the Mad Hungarian during his playing career. “He was good for the ballclub, not just for the wins but also to help keep people loose. There were times for levity, and Joaquin was good at that.”
The Cardinals traded Andujar to Oakland before the 1986 season. He later returned to Houston. For his career, Andujar was 127-118 with a 3.58 ERA.