Apr 10, 2015

Late Sixties Mets Pitching Instructor: Wes Stock (1968-1969)

Wesley Gay Stock was born on April 10th 1934 in Longview Washington. The six foot two right hander attended Washington State University where he played baseball for the Cougars.

He later signed with the Baltimore Orioles in 1956. Stock was out of baseball from 1957-1958, as he served in the Military.

Stock pitched for the Orioles from 1959-1964 being used as a reliever, recording a few saves a year. In 1963 he had his best year going 6-0 with one save &  a 3.94 ERA for the fourth place team.

In 1964 he was traded to the Kansas City A's in exchange for Charlie Lau. He was said to leave Baltimore, because they were a tight knit group with Hall of Famer Hoyt Wilhelm serving as a father figure.

Wes Stock-Nolan Ryan-Rube Walker
He would spend the four years, finishing out his pitching career with the Kansas City A's under Charlie Finley's ownership. In 1964 he was 6-3 by far the best winning % (.667%) on the Kansas City staff. In 50 appearances he posted a 1.94 ERA while recording five saves. In his nine year career Stock appeared in 321 games going 27-13 with 22 saves, 365 strikeouts 215 walks & a 3.60 ERA in 517 innings.

Retirement: It was after his playing days, that Stock became the most famous. He was outstanding pitching coach starting out in the Mets organization in 1968. He helped Mets Pitching Coach Rube Walker, tutor the likes of young Nolan Ryan, Jerry Koosman & Gary Gentry. In his two years in the Mets organization he saw the team win the 1969 World Series, behind it's fine pitching.

He then took a job with the Seattle Pilots, wanting to be closer to his home & family in Washington State. The Pilots moved to Milwaukee & Stock took a job with the now Oakland A's/ He worked with friend Dick Williams under the ownership once again of Charlie Finley.

Stock shared the success of three straight World Championships & five straight Divisional titles in Oakland. His staff's included the likes of Catfish Hunter, Rollie Fingers, Vida Blue & Ken Holtzman. In 1973 three of them were twenty game winners.

As the A's Dynasty broke up, Stock went on to coach in Seattle near his home with the new Seattle Mariners in 1976. He coached there under managers Darrel Johnson & then Maury Wills through 1981. He then took a job for two seasons as the Mariners broadcaster.

Stock returned to Oakland again from 1984-1986 as the teams pitching coach before finally retiring. In 1986 the Tony Larussa Dave Duncan era began in Oakland.

Stock & his wife live happily on Treasure Island in Washington State.

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