Born: Apr 10, 1946
Drafted as a catcher in January, 1965, California native Bob Watson, "The Bull", became a regular in 1970 and developed into one of the league's most feared hitters during the mid-Seventies. A line-drive hitter with moderate power, Watson was an RBI machine in the middle of Houston's lineup whether playing left field or first base. In 1975, Watson gained notoriety as the player who scored the one-millionth run in major league history. He was named the team's Most Valuable Player that season and later set the club's RBI record in 1977 at 110, a mark that would last 17 years. During his 14 seasons with Houston, Watson batted .297 with 139 homers.
Watson was traded to Boston during the 1979 season for reliever Bobby Sprowl. He left the club as its career leader in hits and RBI, and was among the top three in nine other offensive categories. Returning to the Astros in 1988 as an Assistant General Manager, Watson assumed the General Manager role in 1993. The second black GM in baseball history, Watson resigned in 1995 to serve as the GM for the New York Yankees, overseeing their return to World Series dominance. He later worked in the Commissioner's Office with one of his jobs being in charge of suspensions and fines.
Watson was the first player in big league history to hit for the cycle in both leagues. When his playing career ended, he had compiled a .295 average with 184 homers over 19 seasons with the Astros, Red Sox, Yankees and Braves.