Monday, June 15, 2009

1976 Topps #113 - Gary Sutherland

  • Gary Sutherland was an infielder for several teams from 1966-1978. He has the distinction of scoring the first run in Montreal Expos' history and of recording the first putout in Canada (a line drive from Lou Brock).
  • Gary debuted with the Philadelphia Phillies on September 17, 1966. He had three at bats without a hit. Sutherland played for the Phillies in 1967 and batted .247 in 231 at bats. He only hit one home run, which was a harbinger of things to come (he had 24 homers in 13 seasons). He batted .275 in 138 at bats for the Phillies in 1968, then was drafted by the Montreal Expos in the expansion draft.
  • Sutherland was Montreal's starting second baseman in 1969 and batted .239 in 544 at bats. Gary was more of a utility player in 1970, playing 2B, SS, and 3B. He batted .206 in 359 at bats.
1971 was another "utility season" for Sutherland as he played four positions and batted .257 in 304 at bats.
  • Gary started 1972 in Montreal's AAA Peninsula club and was traded in the middle of the season to the Houston Astros. He played for Houtson's AAA Oklahoma City team and then went 1 for 8 for the Astros at the end of the year. Sutherland played in only 16 games for the Astros in 1973 (.259 in 54 at bats) and was traded to the Detroit Tigers at the end of the season.
  • Sutherland had his best season as the starting second baseman for the 1974 Tigers. He batted .254 with 20 doubles and five home runs in 149 games. Gary started at 2B again in 1975 and batted .258 and had a career-best six home runs. He started the 1976 season with the Tigers (.205 in 117 at bats) and then was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers on June 10. He batted .217 in part-time duty with the Brewers and was released before spring training in 1977.
  • Gary hooked on with the San Diego Padres in 1977 and batted .243 in 103 at bats. He was released after the season and ended up with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1978. The Cards released him after he played in only 10 games. That was it for Sutherland's playing career.
  • Sutherland has worked in various scouting and front office positions since 1980. He is now a special assistant to the General Manager for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

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