FORMER CHIEF STEVE BARBER DIES AT 67
Former Syracuse Chiefs and major league pitcher Steve Barber passed away yesterday at the age of 67 due to complications of pneumonia in Henderson, Nevada. He was 67 years old.
The two time American League All Star (1963 and 1966) pitcher began his career in the Orioles organization were he pitched in the major leagues for eight years before a mid season trade in 1967 to the New York Yankees for Chiefs infielders Ray Barker, Chet Trail and Joe Brady.
With the Orioles, Barber won over 90-games as a starting pitcher, with his best season coming in 1963 when he won 20-games, recorded a 2.75 ERA ans struckout 180 batters.
After finishing 10-18 in 1967 combined with the Orioles and Yankees, Barber began the 1968 season in Syracuse and made 7-starts going 1-4 with a 3.23 ERA. His lone win came on May 19, 1968 when the Chiefs defeated Jacksonville (Mets) 4-3. In that game Barber hit a 2-run home run that put the Chiefs ahead in the 6th inning.
Barber was the Opening Day Pitcher of the 1968 season when the Chiefs defeated Jacksonville (Mets) on the road 5-3 in 10-innings despite giving up two home runs to catcher Duffy Dyer.
He would also start the Home Opener at MacArthur Stadium that season against Louisville (Red Sox) in a 6-3 loss that saw him walk seven-batters.
He was called up to New York on May 24th after a little more than a month in Syracuse and finished the 1968 season with the Yankees going 6-5 with a 3.23 ERA in 20-games.
Barber would bounce around baseball for the next four years before retiring in 1974. He would later pitch for Seattle, Cubs, Atlanta, San Francisco and California in the major leagues and the Richmond Braves in the International League in 1970.
Barber who led many leagues in wild pitches and walks was involved in one of the strangest no-hitters in major league baseball. With a 1-0 lead over the Tigers in old Memorial Stadium in 1967, Barber walked the first two batters before getting two outs. He wild pitched in the tying run and then walked his 10th batter of the game before being pulled from the game for reliever Stu Miller. The Tigers scored the go ahead run on an error and wound up winning 2-1 despite getting no-hits.