Wednesday, October 28, 2009

1976 Topps #250 - Fergie Jenkins

  • Ferguson Jenkins pitched for four teams from 1965-1983. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1991. He had 284 career wins, 3,192 career strikeouts, and a 3.34 career ERA.

  • Jenkins had a long and successful career. I'll put up some highlights, but a much better place to read about Fergie is in this link to his SABR biography.
  • He was originally drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies and was traded to the Chicago Cubs with a couple of other guys for Bob Buhl and Larry Jackson. Buhl won six games for the Phillies and was done in 1968. Jackson had a couple of pretty good years but retired after the 1968 season after he was drafted by Montreal in the expansion draft.
  • Fergie started out as a reliever/spot starter and was moved into the Cubs starting rotation in 1967.

  • Jenkins was a league leader in victories (2 times), complete games (9 times), and home runs allowed (7 times). Fergie won the 1971 NL Cy Young Award.
  • Won 20 or more games every year from 1967-1972 and again in 1974 (July 1969 Baseball Digest - Fergie Jenkins: The Best Pitcher in Baseball?).
  • Traded to the Texas Rangers after the 1973 season for Vic Harris and Bill Madlock.
  • Fergie had one good year (25-12 in 1974) and one so-so year (17-18 in 1975) for the Rangers before being traded to the Boston Red Sox for Steve Barr, Juan Beniquez, and Craig SkokJ
  • Things didn't really work out in Boston--Jenkins was 12-11 in 1976 and 10-10 in 1977. He ended up in Don Zimmer's doghouse and was traded back to Texas after the '77 season for John Poloni and cash (April 1978 Baseball Digest - Fergie Jenkins and the Red Sox: A Marriage That Failed).
  • Jenkins had a good comeback season in 1978 (18-8, 3.04 ERA). May 29, 1978 Sports Illustrated - Back on the Comeback Trail Again. He was 16-14 in 1979 (August 1979 Baseball Digest - Fergie Jenkins Wants to go out a Winner) but fell to 12-12 in 1980 and 5-8 in 1981. Jenkins was arrested while crossing the Canadian border with a small quantity of drugs in 1980. He was permanently suspended by Commissioner Bowie Kuhn (the first time this was ever done for a drug-related offense) but was reinstated a couple of weeks later by an arbitrator.
  • After the 1981 season Jenkins signed with the Cubs as a free agent and pitched for them in 1982 and 1983. He was released during spring training in 1984.
  • Fergie's official site.

  • Here is a link to the Fergie Jenkins Foundation, which supports several charities.

  • Fergie's Hall of Fame page.

  • Liked to face: Deron Johnson (.174 in 109 AB); Bobby Bonds (.181 with 29 strikeouts in 94 AB); Dick Allen (.160 with 24 strikeouts in 75 AB)

  • Hated to face: Pete Rose (.316 in 114 AB); Tony Perez (.333 in 93 AB with 8 HR); Al Oliver (.330 in 88 AB)

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