Samuel Lee "Sammy" Stewart (born October 28, 1954 in Asheville, North Carolina), is a former professional baseball player who pitched in the Major Leagues from 1978 to 1987. He attended Owen High School in Swannanoa, NC and Montreat College, and signed his first pro contract with the Baltimore Orioles in 1975. He pitched in 359 major league games, finishing with a 59–48 record, 45 saves, and a 3.59 ERA.
Stewart established a new record for most consecutive strikeouts in a MLB debut with seven in the Orioles' 9–3 victory over the Chicago White Sox in the second game of a twi-night doubleheader at Memorial Stadium on September 1, 1978. His performance surpassed the previous milestone established by Karl Spooner in 1954. In 1981, Stewart led the American League in ERA. Stewart appeared in the 1979 World Series and 1983 World Series as a member of the Orioles.
Stewart was sentenced in October 2006 to 80 to 105 months in the Buncombe Correctional Center on drug possession charges after accepting a plea bargain as a habitual felon. He was released in January 2013. He has been charged 46 times with more than 60 offenses since 1988, and has spent 25 months in prison over six separate stints. He has admitted to being a "crack addict."
Stewart has three children, one of whom has cystic fibrosis. He also lost a son to cystic fibrosis in 1991. Stewart and his wife are currently separated.
- ^ Baltimore Orioles 9, Chicago White Sox 3 (2); Friday, September 1, 1978 (N) at Memorial Stadium – Retrosheet.
- ^ a b Eisenberg, John. "From a hero to felon," The Baltimore Sun, Sunday, December 17, 2006.
- ^ Walker, Childs. "Former Oriole Sammy Stewart out of prison and enjoying a 'simple life,'" The Baltimore Sun, Sunday, October 27, 2013.
- ^ Grossfeld, Stan. "Rock bottom," The Boston Globe, Wednesday, October 25, 2006.
- ^ Jarrett, Keith (October 15, 2006). "Throwing it all away: Drugs ruin life of ex-major leaguer Stewart". Asheville Citizen-Times. Retrieved 2006-10-15.
By Dean Hanley
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