Jan. 27, 2014
EAST LANSING - The Michigan State baseball program hosted its ninth-annual First Pitch Dinner on Sunday at the Kellogg Center, drawing a crowd of more than 500. Spartan great Steve Garvey was honored at the event, while MSU Director of Athletics, Mark Hollis, delivered the keynote address.
Garvey had an illustrious 19-year career in Major League Baseball with both the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres. He was a 10-time All-Star and 1974 National League MVP.
"This is one of the biggest honors of my career," said Garvey. "This is where it all started and where I grew from a teenager into a young man. It was the beginning layer of a career, so to have my number on the wall is quite a distinct honor."
Garvey broke into Major League Baseball with the Dodgers in 1969 and went on to play 14 seasons in Los Angeles. Garvey quickly made his mark as he was elected to his first of eight All-Star games while playing in LA in 1974. That same year, Garvey was voted the National League MVP, batting .312 with 111 RBIs. Garvey also won his first of four consecutive Gold Glove Awards in 1974.
In 1978, Garvey was named MVP of the NLCS, helping the Dodgers to a World Series appearance. Three years later in 1981, Garvey and the Dodgers returned to baseball's biggest stage where they claimed the World Series title.
Garvey played his final five seasons with the San Diego Padres where he helped the club win its first National League Pennant in 1984, capturing his second NLCS MVP in the process. The Padres later retired his No. 6.
Garvey finished his career with a .294 batting average and over 1300 RBIs. He holds the National League record for consecutive games played at 1,207.
While with the Spartans in 1968, Garvey hit .376 and led the team in RBIs with 38. In 2009, Garvey was named the Michigan State Baseball Distinguished Alumnus of the Year.