Friday, January 14, 2022


Thought it'd be fun today to take a closer look at Mike Torrez's 1977 Burger King image used for his card, an airbrushed "update" if you will over his regular Topps 1977 base card which showed him as an Oakland A's player:

The updated Burger King Card has him as a member of the New York Yankees, to whom he was traded just as the new season was underway.
Torrez was dealt East on April 27th for three players, including Dock Ellis, so Topps understandably couldn’t get him airbrushed in a N.Y. uni in time for their 1977 set.
Torrez would go on to help the Yankees, winning 14 games after posting three wins for Oakland, giving him 17 on the season, while in my opinion was the Yankees MVP (outside of Reggie Jackson of course) of the World Series when he went 2-0 over two starts, with two complete games and a 2.50 ERA with 15 strikeouts.
I’ve always been fascinated by Torrez’s run between 1974 and 1978 when he posted 15+ wins each and every year, playing for a different team each and every season!
In 1974 he won 15 for the Montreal Expos, then 20 for the Baltimore Orioles in 1975, then 16 for the Oakland A’s, then the aforementioned 17 combined wins with the Yanks and A’s in 1977, then finally 16 for the Boston Red Sox in 1978.
Toss in his 16 wins for the Expos in 1972 and then another 16 for the Red Sox in 1979, and we are talking a solid eight-year run of dependability that gets overlooked.
By the time he retired after the 1984 season, Torrez fashioned himself a solid 18-year career that saw him go 185-160, with a 3.96 E.R.A., 1404 strikeouts and 15 shutouts over 494 games, 458 of which were starts.
He also won two games in the 1977 World Series against the Dodgers, pitching a complete game in both starts, yielding a 2.50 E.R.A. with 15 strikeouts. Not bad at all…


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