Saturday, December 12, 2009

1976 Topps #294 - Ed Kirkpatrick

  • Ed Kirkpatrick was at the end of his career when this card was made. He played for several teams from 1962-1977 as a utility player (mostly corner infield and outfield and catcher). Kirkpatrick was signed by the Los Angeles Angels in 1962. Ed batted .375 as a 17-year-old for two minor league teams in '62 and was brought up to the Angels for a short time at the end of the season (0 for 6 in 3 games).
  • Ed split the season between the Angels and AA and AAA in 1963. He batted .326 in the minors during June and August. He spent most of the rest of the year with the Angels but didn't play a whole lot. Ed played in 34 games and batted .195 in 75 at bats. In 1964 Kirkpatrick again split time between the Angels and the minors. He played in 75 games for the Angels and batted .242 in 219 at bats.

  • Kirkpatrick played for AAA Hawaii for most of the 1965 season. He hit 20 home runs and batted .291 in 141 games. In September and October Ed started 19 games in RF and batted .260 in 78 at bats. On September 8, 1965 Kirkpatrick collided with Bert Campaneris in the 9th inning of the game in which Bert played all nine positions. There was a brawl after the collision and Bert ended up going to the hospital. The 1966 season was the first one in which Kirkpatrick didn't play in the minors. He played in 117 games for the Angels and batted .192 in 312 games.
  • In 1967 Kirkpatrick played in the minors for all but three games (o for 8). Ed stayed with the Angels in 1968 and batted .230 with 1 HR in 161 at bats as a utility man. After the 1968 season he was traded with Dennis Paepke to the expansion Kansas City Royals for Hoyt Wilhelm. Ed played in 120 games in 1969 and hit .257 with 14 home runs. In 1970 Kirkpatrick played every position but pitcher and second base. His batting average dipped to .229 but he hit a career-high 18 home runs with 62 RBI in 134 games.
  • Kirkpatrick played in 120 games as an outfielder and catcher in 1971 and batted .219 in 365 at bats. In 1972 Ed was the starting catcher for the Royals and had a career high in batting average (.275) in 113 games. Kirkpatrick went back to his OF/C role in 1973 and batted .263 in 429 at bats. After the 1973 season he was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates.
  • From 1974-1976 Ed was a pinch hitter and backup outfielder/infielder. He played in 116 games in 1974 (.247 in 271 AB), 89 games in 1975 (.236 in 144 AB), and 83 games in 1976 (.233 in 146 AB). He was 0 for 11 in the 1974 and 1975 NL Championship Series. He hit Reds manager Sparky Anderson during a brawl in 1975.
  • In 1977 Ed played for three teams. He started with the Pirates, was traded to the Texas Rangers for Jim Fregosi on June 15, and then was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers on August 20 for Gorman Thomas (who was in the minors at the time). Thomas was sold back to the Brewers before the '78 season. Altogether Kirkpatrick batted .222 in 153 at bats. He was released by the Brewers during spring training in 1978 and hooked on with Salt Lake City (AAA club of the California Angels). Despite batting .325 in 69 games, Ed never got called back to the majors.
  • In 1981 Kirkpatrick was involved in an auto accident that put him in a coma for 5 1/2 months and left him permanently paralyzed.
  • Liked to face: Tom Murphy (.412 in 34 AB); Mudcat Grant (.357 in 28 AB); Joe Coleman (.340 in 47 AB)
  • Hated to face: Jim Kaat (.069 in 29 AB); Nolan Ryan (.107 in 28 AB); Jim Palmer (.163 in 43 AB)

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