Astros’ All-Time Best Seasons: Catcher

3 of 7

Apr 16, 2013; Toronto, ON, Canada; A baseball rests in the pocket of a catcher

1977: Joe Ferguson

Joe Ferguson, a talented player who spent considerable time in the outfield during his MLB career, only played a season and a half for the Houston Astros from 1977-1978. He was acquired by the team from the St. Louis Cardinals in trade that involved Larry Dierker.

During the 1977 season, Ferguson played in 122 games for Houston behind the plate. The team went 81-81, though it wasn’t due to Ferguson’s efforts. His stats from that season (from Baseball Reference):

  • .257 BA/.379 OBP/.435 SLG/.814 OPS
  • 108 hits
  • 59 runs
  • 21 doubles
  • 3 triples
  • 16 HRs
  • 61 RBI
  • 85 walks
  • 6 stolen bases
  • 4.7 WAR

Ferguson posted the highest WAR in a single season for an Astros catcher. He also led the team in walks and was tied for third in home runs. The following year, in July 1978, Ferguson was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers for players to be named later, which came to be Rafael Landestoy and Jeffrey Leonard.

Joe Ferguson made a name for himself a few years earlier when he made what some consider to be the best throw out in World Series history.

Next: 1987: Alan Ashby