Jim Fanning, the longtime Montreal Expos executive who managed the franchise to its only playoff appearance in Canada, has died. He was 87. Fanning was the Expos’ general manager when the team entered the major leagues in 1968 and spent 25 years with the franchise that moved to Washington in 2005 and became the Nationals.
As manager in the strike-shortened 1981 season, he directed Montreal to playoffs. After beating Philadelphia, the Expos lost to Los Angeles in the National League Championship Series. Fanning was 116-103 as manager in 1981-82 and 1984.
Fanning was inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame in 2000 and served as a team ambassador for the Blue Jays.
Fanning was born in Chicago on Sept. 14, 1927, and attended high school in Moneta, Iowa. He played in college at Buena Vista in Iowa and the University of Illinois.
A resident of London, Ontario, he became a Canadian citizen in 2012.