Today in Tribe History: December 3, 1980

Cleveland left fielder and designated hitter Joe Charboneau is named the American League’s Rookie of the Year for the 1980 season, earning 15 of the 28 first place votes.

Charboneau had a breakout season in his first year in the Majors, batting .289. His 23 home runs and 87 RBI both led the team. “Super Joe” broke camp on Cleveland’s MLB roster after an injury to Andre Thornton and did not disappoint, slugging a home run in the second at bat of his first game, a 10-2 loss to the California Angels.

Charboneau’s career would decline after that first season, as the slugger would hit .210 in 48 games with four homers and 18 RBI in 1981 and would play in just 22 games during the 1982 season, hitting .214 with two homers and nine RBI in what would be his final MLB action.

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