Winfield signs record-setting deal with Yankees
So, on Dec. 15, 1980, they lured another to the Bronx, signing Dave Winfield to a 10-year, $23 million contract – the richest in professional sports history at the time.
By signing with New York, Winfield would join outfielder Reggie Jackson, who had been with the club for the previous four seasons, making the All-Star Game every year in pinstripes and finishing as the runner-up for the AL MVP in 1980.
The Yankees held a press conference at Jimmy Weston’s Restaurant in New York to announce the signing, with former manager Dick Howser, new manager Gene Michael, Jackson, Willie Randolph and the entire coaching staff in attendance.
The transition seemed to go rather smoothly for Winfield, who batted .294 and earned his fifth of 12 consecutive All-Star selections in 1981, while the Yankees captured the AL pennant.
Over nine seasons with New York, Winfield batted .290 with 205 homers and an .851 OPS. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2001.
Janey Murray was the digital content specialist at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum