Don Baylor (born June 28, 1949) is a Major League Baseball coach and a former player and manager. During his 19-year playing career, he was a power hitter who played as a first baseman, outfielder, and designated hitter. He played for six different American League teams, primarily the Baltimore Orioles and California Angels. He later managed the expansion Colorado Rockies for six years.
Born in Austin, Texas, Baylor graduated from Stephen F. Austin High School before attending Blinn Junior College in Brenham, Texas. He was drafted in the 2nd round of the 1967 amateur draft by Baltimore. He played for the Orioles (1970-75), Oakland Athletics (1976, 1988), Angels (1977-82), New York Yankees (1983-85), Boston Red Sox (1986-87), and Minnesota Twins (1987).
In 1979, he led the American League with 139 RBIs and 120 runs and was an AL All-Star. He won the AL's MVP award and led the Angels to their first AL Western Division title ever. He reached the World Series three times in his career, in consecutive years with three different teams - the Red Sox in 1986, the Twins in 1987, and the A's in 1988 - and was on the winning side in 1987. Baylor was a power hitter known for crowding the plate. As a result, he set a new ML career record for being hit by pitches in 1987 (breaking Ron Hunt's modern-day record of 243) and finished with 267 in his career. That record stood until it was broken in 2005 by Craig Biggio. Baylor retired with 285 stolen bases, 2135 hits, and 338 home runs.
After retiring as a player, Baylor served as a hitting coach for the Milwaukee Brewers and St. Louis Cardinals until he was named the manager of the expansion Colorado Rockies. He led the team for six years from 1993-98. The Rockies posted their first winning record (77-67) in 1995 and made the postseason as the wildcard team, and as a result, Baylor won the National League Manager of the Year Award. By 1997, the Rockies under Baylor's leadership had the best five-year record (363-384) of any expansion club in MLB history.
After a subpar 1998 season, Baylor was released. He became the hitting coach for the Atlanta Braves in 1999 and was hired to manage the Chicago Cubs in 2000 and managed through 2002. From 2003 to 2004, he served as the bench coach for the New York Mets. He spent the 2005 season with the Seattle Mariners as hitting coach for manager Mike Hargrove, and is currently (as of October 2005) unemployed.
Baylor has been diagnosed with multiple myeloma.