Thursday, June 22, 2017

NOT REALLY MISSING IN ACTION- 1978 FRED ANDREWS

Here’s another “not so missing” card of a player that played the last of his Major League games by the time this card would have come out, former second baseman for the Philadelphia Phillies Fred Andrews:


Andrews appeared in 12 games for Philadelphia in 1977, batting .174 with four hits over 23 at-bats, with a triple and two runs batted in thrown in.
This would be after his first four games as a big league player in 1976 when he went 4-for-6 in a cup-of-coffee at the age of 24.
His totals in the Majors would end up being eight hits in 29 at-bats in 16 lifetime games, with a .276 batting average and four runs scored.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR- 1970 SUB-SET

Here is the next and final Award sub-set card for the 1970 set, the Rookie of the Year winners of the previous year, Ted Sizemore of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the National league and Lou Piniella of the Kansas City Royals for the American League:


Sizemore, who was getting his first taste of the big leagues, ended up playing in 159 games for the Dodgers and batting .271 with 160 hits over 590 at-bats.
He scored 69 runs, with 29 extra base hits and 46 runs batted in, while walking 45 times against 40 strikeouts.
Over in the American League, Lou Piniella was freed from his tenure with the Seattle Pilots the year before and was able to put together a very nice rookie campaign with a .282 batting average based on 139 hits in 493 at-bats over 135 games.
He hit 11 homers and drove in 68 runs while scoring 43 himself, ending up with nine votes, three more than runner-up Mike Nagy of the Boston Red Sox, who had a great rookie year when he posted a 12-2 record along with a 3.11 earned run average over 196.2 innings pitched.
Some other notables who got some votes were Al Oliver, who finished second in the N.L. freshman race, while Carlos May of the Chicago White Sox finished third in the A.L.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

NOT REALLY MISSING IN ACTION- 1972 DAVE ROBINSON

Here’s a “not so missing” 1972 card for a player who already played the last of his Major League games, former San Diego Padres outfielder Dave Robinson:


Robinson played in seven games for San Diego during the 1971 season, all off the bench as a pinch-hitter, going 0-6 at the plate with a walk.
The previous season he had his first taste of the big leagues when he appeared in 15 games for the Padres, batting a very nice .316 with 12 hits over 38 at-bats with a couple of homers and six runs batted in.
That would be it for him in the Majors however, and he would finish his brief career with a .273 average, with 12 hits in 44 at-bats over 22 games.
Oddly, I don’t know what happened, but he never appeared in a game, Major or Minor, ever again, with his pro career lasting three years total.

Monday, June 19, 2017

MISSING IN ACTION- 1978 JOHN D'ACQUISTO

You know, until recently I never realized that former pitcher John D’Acquisto was “missing” from the 1978 Topps set. Just one of those players from my childhood that seemed to be in all the late-70’s sets.
Anyway, though it was a lot harder to find than I thought it would be, I did find one suitable image to use to whip one up:


The San Diego, CA native found himself pitching for the Padres after being traded there by the St. Louis Cardinals in May of 1977.
Splitting his season between the Cardinals and Padres, D’Acquisto posted a 1-2 record along with a 6.54 earned run average over 20 appearances and 52.1 innings pitched.
He’d have a nice 1978 season mainly out of the bullpen, going 4-3 with a 2.13 E.R.A., 10 saves and 104 strikeouts in only 93 innings.
He would go on to pitch another four seasons in the big leagues, taking the mound for not only the Padres, but the Expos, Angels and A’s, for whom he would make his final 11 appearances in 1982.
Over his 10-year career D’Acquisto would finish 34-51, with a 4.56 E.R.A., 600 strikeouts and 15 saves over 266 games and 779.2 innings pitched.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

1975 IN-ACTION: BOBBY BONDS

The next 1975 “In-Action” card is of slugging speedster Bobby Bonds, about as electric a player when this card would have come out as there was at the time:


Bonds was actually traded to the New York Yankees in October of 1974, taking his 30/30 talents to the Bronx, where he would not disappoint with 32 home runs and 30 stolen bases, at the time his third such seasons on his way to five overall in his 14-year career.
By the time he left the Majors after the 1981 season, he retired with 332 homers and 461 stolen bases, along with 1258 runs scored and 1024 runs batted in over 1849 games and 7043 at bats.
It’s a shame that by the time he turned 34 his best days were behind him. I never really understood why he dropped off the radar so quickly after a really good season with the Cleveland Indians in 1979.
The following year he found himself with the St. Louis Cardinals, where he would only play in 86 games, before just 45 games in ‘81 with the Chicago Cubs, the last of his career.
An incredible talent, just seems that after his first seven seasons with the San Francisco Giants, no one really wanted to keep him around, playing for seven teams in seven years between 1975 and 1981.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

FUTURE STARS- REGGIE JACKSON

Next up in the “Future Stars” thread for the 1978 set is none other than perhaps the biggest star on the Major League scene at the time this card would have come out, “Mr. October” himself, Reggie Jackson:


Jackson was fresh off of his legendary World Series performance in October, 1977, leading the New York Yankees to their first championship since 1962.
The man was just destined for baseball greatness since his days at Cheltenham High School in Pennsylvania.
Recruited by pro teams and colleges alike, he went on to Arizona State where he was actually on a football scholarship.
Of course we all know the story of the 1966 amateur draft, where the New York Mets held the #1 pick, and opted for high school catcher Steve Chilcott instead of who many considered the true #1 overall amateur, Jackson.
With the second pick, the Kansas City Athletics (later Oakland) picked the slugger and the rest is history, as he would eventually lead the organization to three straight championships between 1972-1974 before being traded in a blockbuster to the Baltimore Orioles where he’d play for one season in 1976.
As a highly coveted free agent before the 1977 season, Jackson signed with the New York Yankees, and with Reggie in NYC, the legend exploded as he helped the Yankees to two championships in 1977-78.
With his larger than life persona, New York ate it up and before you knew it, he was known around the world, even getting his own candy-bar by the end of the decade.
For a kid like me growing up in Brooklyn in the ‘70’s, Reggie was like a God, larger than life, and before he finished up his career in 1987, putting in 21 seasons, he would put together a Hall of Fame career with 563 homers, 1702 runs batted in, an MVP Award in 1973, and five championships.
Add to that 14 all-star nods, four home run titles, a legendary homer in the 1971 All-Star Game against Dock Ellis, his 1977 World Series performance, and you can see why he goes down as one of the most well-known baseball personalities in the history of the game.

Friday, June 16, 2017

NOT SO MISSING IN ACTION- 1974 DOUG HOWARD

Here’s a “not so missing” 1974 card for former outfielder Doug Howard of the California Angels, who appeared in eight games in 1973 after having his first taste of the big leagues the previous season:


Howard went 2-21 at the plate in 1973, which translates to an .095 average along with a run batted in and walk.
He’d play parts of five seasons in the Majors, coming up with California and also playing for the St. Louis Cardinals and Cleveland Indians.
All told he end up playing in 97 games in the big leagues, batting .212 with 46 hits in 217 at-bats over 97 games, with five doubles, a triple and a home run.
In 1977 he appears on an OPC card as a Toronto Blue Jay, having been traded in December of 1976. However he was released prior to the Jays inaugural season.

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