Born: Dec 15, 1946
Art Howe's career in the majors was almost over before it began. The Pittsburgh native played college ball at the University of Wyoming. When he went undrafted, he attended a tryout camp with his hometown Pirates and was turned down. He worked for a year in insurance then decided to give baseball one more time. This time, the Pirates signed the 23-year-old infielder to a minor league deal in 1971. He quickly rose through the minors and made his debut with Pittsburgh in 1974.
After the 1975 season, he was sent to the Astros for second baseman Tommy Helms. A reserve in 1976, Howe got his break in 1977 and immediately impressed the team with his bat and his steady play. Howe became the ideal utilityman during his seven seasons with the team, playing regularly at first, second and third base with a rare start at shortstop.
Howe immortalized himself in Astros lore by driving in four runs in Houston's first-ever playoff clincher, a 7-1 victory over the Dodgers in 1980. Art left the team as a free agent after the 1983 season, but returned in 1989 to manage the team, transitioning a veteran team and leading it through a rebuilding phase and a change of ownership. He was fired after five seasons with a 392-418 (.484) record and later managed with the Oakland A's (1996-2002) and New York Mets (2003-2004).