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'Black Jack' McDowell is Festival parade marshal

By CLAY McCAULEY Special to The News Published: June 21, 2017 12:00 AM
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Jack McDowell, a former Cy Young Award winner, will serve as this year's grand marshal for the Cy Young Days Festival Parade and as guest speaker at the annual banquet slated Saturday, June 24.

McDowell will speak at the luncheon, sign autographs and be available for pictures and then will be in the parade that night at 6 p.m.

McDowell is a man of many talents as he spent parts of 12 seasons as a Major League baseball pitcher with four different ball clubs from the years of 1987-1999.

He was also a professional musician and will be continuing his coaching career in 2018 serving as Queens University of Charlotte's baseball coach.

McDowell, also known as "Black Jack," began what would be a stellar baseball career at Stanford University where he was named second team All-American in 1986 and led the Cardinals to a College World Series championship in 1987.

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The right-handed hurler was drafted fifth overall in the first round of the 1987 amateur draft by the Chicago White Sox and made the starting rotation after only six starts in the minor leagues.

McDowell made his first Major League start on September 15, 1987 which was the beginning of a brilliant rookie campaign.

In his first year in the Major Leagues, "Black Jack" made four total starts for the White Sox finishing 3-0 with a 1.93 earned run average in 28 innings pitched.

McDowell's workload became heavier in the years to come as he made 26 starts in the 1988 campaign when he finished 5-10 with a 3.97 ERA, followed by 33 starts in 1990 when he posted a 14-9 record with an ERA of 3.82.

The next three years in the south side of Chicago would be the best of McDowell's Major League career.

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In 1991, he logged 253.2 innings, made 35 starts, recorded 15 complete games and finished 17-10 with a 3.41 ERA as well as being named to the American League All Star Team.

The following year, McDowell made his second trip to the American League All Star game and finished runner up in the Cy Young voting for the White Sox. He recorded his first 20-win season as he finished 20-10 with a 3.18 earned run average.

In 1993, "Black Jack" enjoyed the best season of his career as he posted a career-high 22 wins and four shutouts. He tossed 10 complete games, made his third consecutive trip to the American League All Star team and earned the coveted Cy Young Award.

Also in the 1993 season, McDowell led the White Sox to the American League Championship Series where they dropped a series to the Toronto Blue Jays.

McDowell would spend one more year with the White Sox before being traded to the New York Yankees after the 1994 season and spent only one season in New York.

In his lone year with the Bronx Bombers, "Black Jack" finished the 1995 season with a 15-10 record and a 3.93 ERA and pitched a pair of games in the American League Division Series against the Seattle Mariners.

Following the 1995 season, McDowell signed with the Cleveland Indians where he would pitch the 1996 and 1997 seasons.

In his short stint with the Tribe, McDowell finished 16-12 with a 5.11 ERA on the mound, but was hindered with an injury-plagued 1997 season where he made only six starts.

"Black Jack" finished off his impressive career with two seasons with the Anaheim Angels where he dealt with more injuries and retired from baseball following the 1999 season.

McDowell's all time record in 12 seasons in the Major Leagues was 127-87 with a 3.85 ERA.

Following his years as a player, McDowell decided to get back into baseball.

In 2014, McDowell was named the manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers Rookie League affiliate, the Ogden Raptors.

In 2015, he was named manager of the Arizona League Dodgers and now prepares to manage the Queens University of Charlotte's baseball team in 2018.

Reservations are being taken for the luncheon slated at the Laborers Local 134 Hall at the corner of River and Main Streets in Newcomerstown. The doors will open at 11:30 a.m. and lunch will be served at 12:30 p.m. Tickets, costing $20 for adults and $10 for children under 11, can be purchased by calling 740-498-4545 or email chaney.janet8@gmail.com.


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