In 1965, the Kansas City A’s were on their way to a 103-loss season. In order to draw crowds, A’s owner Charlie O. Finley came up with “Campy Campaneris Night,” in which his young shortstop would appear at a different position each inning. On September 8, 1965 Bert Campaneris became the first player to play every position in a Major League game. He did amazingly well, all things considered. Campy started at his natural shortstop position in the first. He picked up an assist on a pickoff as a second baseman in the second inning. After a stay at the hot corner in the third, he moved to left field for the fourth, and caught a fly ball. Campy snared another in center the following inning, but muffed a fly ball in right in the sixth. In the seventh he moved to first base and made a put-out on a pop-up. Campaneris’ most challenging assignments came in the final two innings. When he took the mound in the eighth he pitched as well as could be expected. On the mound, he pitched ambidextrously, throwing lefty to left-handers, and switched against right-handers. Campy allowed two walks, one hit and one run. Campaneris moved behind the plate in the ninth. With two outs, California tested his arm with a double steal. Second baseman Dick Green took the throw at second and speedily whipped it back to Campy. The runner’s only shot at scoring was to crash into the stand-in catcher and try to jar the ball loose. Campaneris held on to preserve the 3-3 tie, but the collision forced him to leave the field. After he headed off for X-rays, the two teams dueled long into the night. The game didn’t end until the thirteenth inning, when the Angels scored twice to win, 5-3. Campy ended with one run, one stolen base, 5 put-outs and one assist.
Game Played on Wednesday, September 8, 1965 (N) at Municipal Stadium
CAL A 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 – 5 8 0
KC A 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 – 3 9 3
Kansas City A’s AB R H RBI BB SO PO A
Campaneris 3 1 0 0 1 1 5 1
PITCHING IP H R ER BB SO HR
Campaneris 1 1 1 1 2 1 0
When the A’s moved to Oakland in 1968, he led the league in hits (177). Campaneris had six double plays in a game on September 13, 1970, setting an American League record, and in 1972 he led AL shortstops with 795 total chances. In his post-season career he hit 3 homers, 11 RBI, 4 doubles, 1 triple, scored 15 runs, and stole 6 bases in 37 games. Campy got the winning RBI for Oakland in the third game of the 1973 World Series with a dramatic home run in the 11th inning. He also homered in the final Series game, helping his team to win the World Championship for the second straight year. In his 19-year career Campaneris scored 1181 runs, had 2249 hits, 313 doubles, and 86 triples in 2328 games. His 649 stolen bases ranks him 14th in the list of the top 100 all-time leaders. Other career highlights: 6-time All-Star (1968, 1972-75, 1977); 6 times led league in stolen bases (1965-68, 1970, 1972); Led league in hits (1968); Led league in triples (1965); Twice led league in at bat (1968, 1972); Hit three triples in a game (1969); Stole five bases in a game (1976); 3 times led league in sacrifice hits (1972, 1977-78); Set an AL record for double plays (1970).