Some of the Top Cards of 1976

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

1976 Topps #292 - Leon Roberts






  • Leon Roberts played for six teams from 1974-1984. Roberts was drafted by the Detroit Tigers in 1972. He played in the minors from 1972-1974 and batted .304 in '72, .294 in '73, and .285 in '74 with some power. At the end of the 1974 season Roberts was brought up and batted .270 in 17 games.
  • In 1975 Roberts became the starting right fielder for the Tigers. He batted .257 with 10 HR in 129 games. Leon was traded to the Houston Astros after the 1975 season. Roberts was a backup outfielder for the Astros in 1976. He batted .289 in 87 games in '76. Leon started the 1977 season very poorly (he was batting .095 on June 3) and spent most of the season in the minors. Altogether Leon batted .074 in 19 games. He was traded to the Seattle Mariners for Jimmie Sexton before the 1978 season.
  • Roberts had some productive seasons with the Mariners. In 1978 he batted .301 with 22 HR and 92 RBI as the starting right fielder. Leon batted .271 with 15 HR and 54 RBI in 1979. His production tapered off in 1980 (.251, 10 HR, 33 RBI) and after the season Roberts was traded to the Texas Rangers.
  • In 1981 Roberts mostly played right field and it was his last year as a regular. He batted .279 with 4 HR and 31 RBI in 72 games. Leon played in 31 games for the Rangers in 1982 (.233, 1 HR, 6 RBI) before he was sold to the Toronto Blue Jays on July 15. He played in 40 games for the Blue Jays (.229, 1 HR, 5 RBI) and was traded to the Kansas City Royals for Cecil Fielder after the season.
  • Leon was a backup outfielder and designated hitter in 1983. He batted .258 with 8 HR and 24 RBI in 84 games. In 1984 Roberts batted .222 in 45 AB and was released after the season. He played for Detroit's AAA Evansville club in 1985 but wasn't called up to the majors.
  • Roberts managed for several years in the Detroit farm system after his playing career. He also did some coaching for other clubs (in 2001 he was the hitting coordinator for the Cincinnati Reds organization). Here is a 2001 interview with Roberts.
  • Liked to face: Lary Sorensen (.467 in 15 AB); Fergie Jenkins (.393 in 28 AB); Dennis Eckersley (.346 in 26 AB)
  • Hated to face: Steve Stone (.129 in 31 AB); Ed Figueroa (.136 in 22 AB); Francisco Barrios (.063 in 16 AB)




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