Braves mourn the passing of Don Sutton

Hall-of-Famer was 75

January 19th, 2021

ATLANTA – Braves Hall-of-Fame broadcaster Don Sutton passed away in his sleep. He was 75.

We are deeply saddened by the passing of our dear friend, Don Sutton. A generation of Braves fans came to know his voice, as Don spent 28 seasons broadcasting Braves games after a 23-year, Hall-of-Fame major league career with the Dodgers, Astros, Brewers and Angels. Don was as feared on the mound as he was beloved in the booth. A 300-game winner who was a four-time All-Star, Don brought an unmatched knowledge of the game and his sharp wit to his calls. But despite all the success, Don never lost his generous character or humble personality. It is with a heavy heart that we send our condolences and sympathies to Don’s entire family, including his wife Mary, his son Daron and his daughters Staci and Jacquie.

Sutton was a fixture on Braves broadcasts for 28 years, calling games on both television and radio. Sutton, elected to the Atlanta Braves Hall of Fame in 2015 and the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1998, joined the broadcast team after a 23-year major league career.

Sutton signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1964 and made his major league debut two years later, going 12-12 with a 2.99 ERA over 37 games to earn Sporting News N.L. Rookie Pitcher of the Year honors. He spent the next 14 seasons with the Dodgers, earning four All-Star appearances (1972, ‘73, ‘75 and ’77) and the 1980 ERA title.

He joined the Houston Astros as a free agent in 1981 and was traded to Milwaukee in August 1982, where he pitched three seasons before being traded to Oakland in December 1984. He was traded to California in September 1985 and played one final season with the Dodgers in 1988 prior to his retirement.

A native of Clio, AL, Sutton appeared in more than 774 career games, finishing with 324 wins and 178 complete games. His career-high totals included 21 wins (1976), 293.1 innings pitched (1969), 41 games (1969), a 2.08 ERA (1972), 41 starts (1969), 217 strikeouts (1969) and 18 complete games (1972), all with the Dodgers. He ranks seventh on baseball’s all-time strikeout list with 3,574. He went 4-1 with a 2.02 ERA in seven League Championship Series games, and 2-3 with a 5.26 ERA in eight World Series games. In the 1974 postseason, he was 3-0 with a 1.50 ERA and 25 strikeouts in four games. He also posted a 1-0 record in four All-Star appearances without allowing a run.

Sutton’s illustrious career was capped by election to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1998.

Following his retirement from the majors in 1988, Sutton joined the broadcast booth in 1989 and was added to Braves telecasts full-time on TBS in 1990. He remained in the Atlanta booth until the 2007 season, when he joined the Washington Nationals broadcast team for two seasons. Sutton returned to Braves broadcasts in 2009 and worked the booth until his retirement in 2018.

In addition to his role on baseball broadcasts, he served as a course reporter on TBS’s professional golf coverage, working the Hawaiian Open, PGA Championship and PGA Grand Slam of Golf, as well as TNT’s coverage of the Sarazen World Open Championship. His network broadcasting experience included pre- and postgame analysis for NBC’s 1987 League Championship series coverage.

Related

Sutton’s 28 years in the Braves broadcast booth led to his induction into the Atlanta Braves Hall of Fame in 2015. He is one of five broadcasters to receive the honor.