|Outfielder / Designated hitter|
February 6, 1949 |
Brooklyn, New York
|Batted: Right||Threw: Right|
|September 8, 1971 for the Pittsburgh Pirates|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 21, 1983 for the Seattle Mariners|
|Runs batted in||792|
|Career highlights and awards|
Zisk was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates out of Seton Hall University in the third round of the 1967 Major League Baseball Draft, and made his major league debut on September 8, 1971 replacing Roberto Clemente in right field in the eighth inning of Pittsburgh's 10-1 victory over the Chicago Cubs, and got a single in his first major league at-bat.2 Zisk also made seventeen appearances with the 1972 Pirates, however, he was not on either team's post-season roster.
In Zisk's rookie season, 1973, he batted .324 with ten home runs. On June 9, 1974, he hit for the cycle in a 14-1 victory over the San Francisco Giants at Candlestick Park.3 For the season, he led the Pirates with 100 runs batted in while also clubbing seventeen home runs. He made his only post-season appearances with the 1974 and 1975 Pirates. While batting an impressive .400 in the post-season, Zisk only scored one run and had no RBIs as the Pirates were swept in the 1974 and 1975 National League Championship Series by the Los Angeles Dodgers and Cincinnati Reds, respectively. Following the 1976 season, the Pirates traded Zisk along with Silvio Martinez to the Chicago White Sox for Terry Forster and Rich Gossage.
His best season was in 1977, his lone year with the White Sox, when he hit 30 home runs and had 101 RBIs in addition to a .290 batting average. He started in left field for the American League in the 1977 All-Star game. He went two for three with a double and two RBIs.4
Zisk became a free agent at the end of the season, and signed with the Texas Rangers. He batted clean-up, and started in right field at the 1978 All-Star Game at San Diego Stadium in San Diego, California. For the season, Zisk batted .262 with 22 home runs and 85 RBIs splitting time between left field, right field and designated hitter.
After three seasons in Texas, Zisk was traded to the Seattle Mariners with Brian Allard, Rick Auerbach, Ken Clay, Steve Finch and Jerry Don Gleaton for Larry Cox, Rick Honeycutt, Willie Horton, Mario Mendoza and Leon Roberts. His first season in Seattle, he batted .311 with sixteen home runs to earn 1981 AL Comeback Player of the Year honors. After three seasons as the Mariners' designated hitter, he retired after the 1983 season.
Zisk played baseball at Parsippany High School.5 The Daytona Cubs retired Richie's number 22 on July 20, 2007 with his family in attendance and on his bobblehead day. His younger brother, John, played a season in the Texas Rangers' organization, and two for the independent Wausau Timbers of the Midwest League.
In 2004, Richie Zisk was inducted into the National Polish-American Sports Hall of Fame. 
- "Pittsburgh Pirates 10, Chicago Cobs 1". 1971-09-08.
- "Pittsburgh Pirates 14, San Francisco Giants 1". 1974-06-09.
- "1977 Major League Baseball All-Star Game". 1977-07-19.
- Taveras, Danny. "Classroom a thrill for teacher: Students say Caprio gives and receives respect, offers encouragement", Daily Record (Morristown), November 9, 2004. Accessed May 14, 2007. "Caprio fondly recalls some of his former students who achieved success in the world of sports -- Joe Orsulak, the former professional baseball player, and Johnnie Morant, a recent graduate who is now a rookie playing football for the Oakland Raiders. 'My most famous student is Richie Zisk,' he says of the former professional baseball player."
- Career statistics and player information from MLB, or ESPN, or Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube, or Baseball-Reference (Minors)