All-Time MLB Players From Louisiana: Vida Blue
There have been a number of individuals from Lafayette, and the Acadiana area, that have played in Major League Baseball over the years.
Obviously, the entire state of Louisiana has produced even more.
As a matter of fact, 246 people born in the state of Louisiana have appeared in a Major League Baseball game, beginning in 1874, with John Peters of New Orleans, who played 11 years, with the likes of the Chicago White Stockings, Milwaukee Grays, Providence Grays, Buffalo Bisons, and Pittsburgh Alleghenys.
All summer, we’ll preview a player from the state of Louisiana that appeared in Major League baseball, starting with players from Lafayette, before spotlighting players from the Acadiana area, and then a few from the state itself.
Yesterday, we spotlighted Shane Reynolds.
Today, we feature Vida Blue.
Born in Mansfield in 1949, Blue, a left-handed pitcher, played parts of 17 seasons in Major League Baseball, with the Oakland A's (1969-1977), San Francisco Giants (1978-1981 & 1985-1986), and the Kansas City Royals (1982-1983).
Blue went to De Soto High School, and then played his college baseball at Southern, before being selected by the A's in the second round of the 1967 Major League Baseball Amateur Draft.
The 6-foot, 190-pound Blue made his Major League debut on July 20, 1969, at the age of 19, pitching 5.1 innings against the California Angels.
Blue went on to appear in 12 games for the A's in 1969, including 4 as a starter, going 1-1, to go along with a 6.64 ERA.
After pitching only 38.2 big league innings in 1970, Blue became a fulltime member of the A's pitching staff in 1971, and did so in outstanding fashion, as he went 24-8, to go along with a 1.82 ERA., while winning both the American League Cy Award and the AL Most Valuable Player Award.
Blue went on to have nine more double-digit win seasons, and two more 20-win seasons, while being named to five All-Star teams.
The A's made the playoffs for five-consecutive seasons (1971-1975), and Blue was a fixture on a franchise that also won three-consecutive World Series trophies (1972-1974).
After winning 124 games as a member of the Astros over 9 seasons, Blue joined the Giants for the first of two stints there, winning 54 games over four seasons, before moving on to the Royals for two years, and then finally back to the Giants, before retiring following the 1986 campaign.
In parts of 17 MLB seasons, Blue appeared in 502 games, including 473 as a starter, going 209-161 with a 3.27 ERA over 3343.1 innings of work.