Mickey Lolich (born September 12, 1940 in Portland, Oregon) was a baseball player. He was a pitcher in the Major Leagues from 1962 until 1979, playing the majority of his career with the Detroit Tigers.
Lolich is best known for his performance in the 1968 World Series, when he allowed just five runs in three complete games, winning all three including the final and decisive game. He remains the last pitcher to win three complete games in a single World Series, and was the last to win three at all until Randy Johnson turned the trick in 2001. Lolich was given the World Series MVP Award for his performance.
Lolich was a picture of consistency, winning 14 or more games for ten consecutive seasons including 25 in 1971 and 22 in 1972. He also struck out 200 or more batters seven times during his career and ranks third among lefthanders (behind Steve Carlton and Randy Johnson) in career strikeouts with 2,832.
After suffering through the 1975 season when he lost 18 games, the Tigers traded him to the New York Mets in exchange for Rusty Staub. In 1976, Lolich slumped to just winning only eight games and losing 13 with the Mets, and decided to retire. He returned to his home in suburban Detroit and opened a donut shop, and skipped the 1977 season. Afterwards, he became a free agent and signed a contract with the San Diego Padres and played with them during the 1978 and 1979 seasons before retiring for good. At the time of his retirement, no left handed pitcher in baseball history had more strike-outs.
Although he pitched left-handed, Lolich batted and did most everything else with his right hand. A childhood injury to his left arm caused him to throw with that hand to strengthen it, and the result was that he soon threw better with the left than he ever did the right.
After his playing career, Lolich continued to run his donut shop near Detroit for several years, before selling the business and retiring to his home in Oregon. He currently is active in charitable work and serves as a coach at the Detroit Tigers' Fantasy Camp in Lakeland, Florida.
In 2003, Lolich was one of 26 players selected to the final ballot by the Baseball Hall of Fame's Veterans Committee. He received only 13 votes, placing him far below the 75equired for election. Lolich has often said the fact that he never won the Cy Young Award was a factor in not receiving sufficient votes to be elected into the Hall of Fame.
Preceded by: Bob Gibson World Series MVP 1968 Succeeded by: Donn Clendenon