Over his career, he had 65 home runs, 453 runs batted in and a .275 batting average.
Noren was the third-base coach for the Oakland A’s when they became World Series champions in 1972 and 1973. He was also a player-manager in the minor leagues.
After leaving baseball, he owned several businesses and bred thoroughbred horses in Southern California.
He is survived by three daughters, Vicky Scribner, Debby Kubiak and Nancy Burke; a son, Jim; a sister, Janet Johnson; 13 grandchildren; and 14 great-grandchildren. His wife, Veda (Mewes) Noren, died in 2013.
Two years after experiencing the thrill of becoming a Yankee, and in the wake of his All-Star season, Noren encountered the Yankee front office’s “bad cop, good cop” negotiating strategy.
As he told it, Bill DeWitt, the Yankees’ assistant general manager and formerly general manager of the usually woeful St. Louis Browns, grudgingly offered him a raise of $2,000 from his $19,000 salary (which would have given him the equivalent of about $200,000 today).
“I called him and said, ‘That’s no raise after leading the team in hitting,’” Noren recalled in Richard Lally’s oral history “Bombers” (2002). “I told him: ‘Billy, you’re not with the Browns in last place anymore, you’re with the Yankees. Act like it.’”
“Oh, did he hang up on me in a hurry,” Noren remembered. “Three days later, George Weiss called and asked what it would take to satisfy me. I told him I wanted an $8,000 raise, and he agreed. Just like that.”
Daniel E. Slotnik contributed reporting.
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