Danny Goodwin

We made a flippant statement earlier about Danny Goodwin having played in more games for the Angels than had Mark Teixeira.

A reader then e-mailed to remind us that Danny Goodwin is the answer to an interesting trivia question:

What player was the first overall pick in the MLB draft on two different occasions?  We’ve tipped our hand, obviously, but the answer is Danny Goodwin. 

Not to be confused with the purveyor of Dodger paraphenalia, Goodwin was the first pick of the 1971 Major League draft, selected by the Chicago White Sox.   

Four years later, he was the Angels’ first round pick (and the first pick overall) in the 1975 draft.  Less than three months after being drafted by the Angels, he debuted as a September call-up, getting a handful of at-bats.

He didn’t appear for the Angels during the 1976 season, returning in 1977 and 1978 for part-time duty as a DH (Goodwin played only 8 games at 1B during his time with the Angels). 

Despite all of the national hype surrounding Danny Goodwin, his best contribution to the Angels was not on the field but in the transaction column. 

A couple months prior to the beginning of the “Yes We Can” 1979 season, the Angels packaged Goodwin and Ron “Papa” Jackson in a trade that brought “Disco” Dan Ford, from the Twins, as the much needed replacement for the late Lyman Bostock.

Goodwin played some of his best ball during the 1978 season prior to the trade (an OPS+ of 141 in limited action) and in his first season for Minnesota in 1979.  But he was never able to find time as a full-time player.  Considered a poor defender, Goodwin was an under-powered DH.

He never played more than 59 games in a season, found himself released by the Twins in 1981, and then finished his rather disappointing career with the A’s in 1982.

After seven years in professional baseball, Danny Goodwin was out of the game.  Given that he was the only man ever to be selected twice as the first overall pick in the draft, his flame out cannot be ignored when discussing baseball’s greatest draft disappointments. 

Despite the fact that he was a disappointment on the field, he was the centerpiece of the trade that brought an integral contributor to the Angels’ first divsion champion team in 1979.

So the next time you remember “Disco” Dan fondly, give a nod toward Danny Goodwin.

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3 Comments

Filed under The Angels

3 responses to “Danny Goodwin

  1. Ruppert in NYC

    Great post, Nolan. I know how people love the ’82 and ’86 teams, but I’d have to say that after the ’02 team, the ’79 gang provided the most thrills, day in and day out. It was the Angels’ first truly contending team, the Yes We Can guy… It might have been the last season of the era in which fans would come to games shirtless (men) and in bikini tops (women). I remember far more fights in the stands, too. Great era.

  2. I always think of Dan Ford as “Corky.”

  3. And Dan Ford was traded to the Orioles for Doug DeCinces – the gift that keeps on giving.

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