On the blog today we have a “borderline” missing 1973 card for former pitcher Jim Rooker, who I feel had enough playing time in 1972 to warrant a card the following year:
Rooker appeared in 18 games for the Kansas City Royals, pitching 72 innings and posting a record of 5-6 with an ERA of 4.38.
Considering some of the other players who got cards in the 1973 set, I figure Rooker could have easily gotten one as well.
Anyway, in 1973 he would find himself now a member of the Pittsburgh Pirates, and the change of scenery would be beneficial, as he’d post a record of 10-6 with a very nice 2.85 ERA over 41 appearances and 170.1 innings, with three shutouts and five saves.
He would go on to post another four straight seasons of double-digit wins for the Pirates, including career-bests 15 in both 1974 and 1976, with three seasons of sub-3.00 ERAs.
By the time he retired after the 1980 season, all with Pittsburgh, he finished with a career record of 103-109, with a nice 3.46 ERA over 319 appearances and 1810.1 innings pitched, along with 15 shutouts and seven saves between 1968 and 1980.