Dale Murphy Interview on 1982 - Part One

Bill Shanks

When Dale Murphy came up with the Braves in 1976, they were two years removed from the Hank Aaron era. Aaron had just broken Babe Ruth's home run record in 1974, and then at the end of that season he was traded back to Milwaukee to end his career with the Brewers.

Murphy had been the first round pick for the Braves that same year, and in two quick years he made it to Atlanta for a cup of coffee at the end of the season.

It happened again in 1977, when Murphy played in 18 games. Then in 1978, Murphy finally stuck on the roster and played in 151 games, mainly as the team's first baseman.

It was obvious then the Braves had their next special player. Murphy was then moved to the outfield in 1980, where his career took off. He was an All-Star for the first time in 1980 and settled in as the next superstar in a Braves uniform.

The team, however, still struggled. There was a disappointing season in 1981, the strike-shortened season, when there were high expectations after the team was near the .500 mark in 1980. 

Bobby Cox was then fired and replaced by former Braves catcher Joe Torre, and things immediately changed. Plus, Torre made Murphy a priority, hoping to get him to the next level.

Torre did that with Murphy and the entire team, as the Braves won the NL West division in 1982 and Murphy won the National League MVP award.

Murphy sets the stage for that special season in part one of the interview with the Braves Hall of Famer.

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