On the blog today we have a “not so missing” 1974 card for former pinch-runner Matt Alexander, who managed to swipe 103 bases during his nine-year MLB career while only collecting 36 hits:
Alexander played in the first 12 games of his Major League career during
the 1973 season as a member of the Chicago Cubs, hitting an even .200
with one hit over five at-bats while scoring four runs and stealing two
After getting traded to the Oakland A’s for Minor Leaguer Buddy Copeland
in April of 1975, he’d go on to average about 20 steals a season over
the next three years, occasionally playing the field while collecting
only 12 hits combined.
Much like the more famous “designated runners” Herb Washington and Larry
Lintz, was a speedster who found his niche (though I’m sure he would
have rather have just PLAYED than pinch-run), playing out his nine-year
MLB career with four seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates, including the
World Champion 1979 edition, when he appeared in 44 games, hitting .538
with seven hits over 13 at-bats, with 16 runs scored and 13 steals.
Overall, after retiring in 1981, Alexander finished with a .214 career
average, with 111 runs scored on 36 hits, with 103 steals over 374 games
and 168 at-bats.
As a quirk in MLB history, he is one of only seven players (excluding
pitchers) to have played at least 100 games and have more games played