Steve Brye

Steve BryeBrye found himself in the middle of a controversial situation on the final day of the 1976 season. Teammate Rod Carew was in a heated battle for the AL batting title with two players from the Kansas City Royals: George Brett and Hal McRae. It so happened that Brye and the Twins were in Kansas City to play the Royals on the final Sunday of the season. It was a meaningless game in the standings since KC had already clinched the AL West division title, but the batting race was up for grabs. Carew was hitting .329 while Brett and McRae were both at .333 (Brett holding a slim lead when the decimals were drawn out). Late in the 162nd game, with only one point separating the three players, Brett hit a liner to left that seemed to be a ball that Brye could catch, but he didn’t and the ball rolled around the warning track while Brett circled the bases for an inside-the-park homer. McRae followed with a ground out and finished one point behind his teammate for the crown. After the game, Mcrae ripped Brye, claiming the Minnesota outfielder had purposely missed the ball to ensure a white man would win the batting title.