John Cumberland, a former left-handed pitcher who appeared in 110 Major League Baseball games from 1968 to 1974, passed away in his Lutz home, on April 5.
He was 74.
Cumberland was a member of the New York Yankees, San Francisco Giants, St. Louis Cardinals and California Angels, and then went on to manage in the majors for 23 years.
Originally from Maine, Cumberland made his major-league debut with the Yankees in late 1968 and then was traded to the Giants in the offseason. He spent most of his pitching career with the Giants, but ended his nine-year playing career after a brief stint with the Cardinals. He finished his career with a 15-16 record, six complete games, two shutouts and two saves. Over 334 1/3 innings pitched, he gave up 312 hits, 142 earned runs and 46 home runs, walked 103 batters and struck out 137. His career ERA was 3.82.
Cumberland began coaching in 1982 as pitching coach of Class A Lynchburg of the Carolina League. He was there three seasons, including in 1983 when he coached 18-year-old phenom and Tampa native Doc Gooden. Cumberland worked as a minor league coach for the New York Mets, Milwaukee Brewers and the San Diego Padres.
He was briefly the Boston Red Sox pitching coach, in 1995, before becoming a scout for the team. From 1999 to 2001, he was the Red Sox bullpen coach. In 2002, he became the Kansas City Royals pitching coach, until he finally retired from baseball on June 29, 2004.
Cumberland, who also was in the Army Reserve and inducted into the Maine Sports Hall of Fame, is survived by his wife of 52 years, three sons, a brother, a sister and three grandchildren.
Published June 8, 2022.
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