Monday, December 14, 2009

1976 Topps #296 - Pat Dobson

  • Pat Dobson pitched for six teams from 1967-1977. He was signed by the Detroit Tigers in 1959 at the age of 17. He was in the minors from 1960-1967, then finally was called up to the Tigers in late May of '67. Pat was a mop-up man in 1967 and went 1-2 with a 2.92 ERA in 28 games. He pitched winter ball in Puerto Rico after the 1967 season and struck out 21 batters in one game.
  • In 1968 Dobson was a spot starter and reliever. He appeared in 47 games (10 starts) and was 5-8 with 7 saves and a 2.66 ERA. He appeared in three games in the 1968 World Series and had a 3.86 ERA. Pat had a similar role in 1969. He was in 49 games (9 starts) and was 5-10 with 9 saves and a 3.60 ERA.
  • After the 1969 season Dobson criticized Detroit management for firing pitching coach Johnny Sain and for not doing enough to improve the team. Pat and Dave Campbell were promptly traded to the San Diego Padres for Joe Niekro. Pat was given a chance to be a regular starter and was 14-15 with a 3.76 ERA in 34 starts. After the 1970 season Dobson was traded to the Baltimore Orioles in a multi-player trade.
  • Dobson had his best season in 1971. He won 20 games (one of four 20-game winners the Orioles had that year) and lost only eight. He had a 2.90 ERA in '71. Pat wasn't used in the ALCS. He started game 4 of the World Series but wasn't involved in the decision. After the '71 season Pat pitched a no-hitter during a tour of Japan.
  • In 1972 Dobson led the AL with 18 losses. He was 16-18 with a 2.65 ERA in 36 starts. After the 1972 season Pat was traded to the Atlanta Braves.
  • Dobson wasn't happy with the Braves. He complained that the entire team and ballpark were built around offense. He was 3-7 with a 4.99 ERA with the Braves before being traded to the New York Yankees on June 7. He went 9-8 with a 4.17 ERA for the Yankees in 21 starts.
  • In 1974 Dobson had another good year. He was 19-15 with a 3.07 ERA in 39 starts. Dobson was 11-14 with a 4.07 ERA in 1975. He clashed with manager Bill Virdon about the merits of a 4-man rotation (preferred by Dobson) vs. a 5-man rotation that Virdon wanted to use. Virdon was fired by the Yankees in August, but Pat also clashed with new manager Billy Martin. After the 1975 season Pat was traded to the Cleveland Indians for Oscar Gamble.
  • Pat was glad to be traded to the Indians and to play for former teammate Frank Robinson. He had a 16-12 record with a 3.48 ERA in 35 starts in 1976. But Dobson struggled in 1977 and was pulled from the rotation in July. He ended up 3-12 with a 6.12 ERA. Pat was released by the Indians during spring training in 1978.
  • After his playing career Pat was a pitching coach for several years. He became the pitching coach of the Milwaukee Brewers in 1982 and served until the end of the 1984 season. Dobson was also the pitching coach for the San Diego Padres from 1988-1990, the Kansas City Royals from 1991-1992, and the Baltimore Orioles in 1996. In 1997 Dobson joined the Giants as an advance scout and an assistant to general manager Pat Sabean. He died of leukemia on November 22, 2006.
  • Here is a link to a good SABR biography about Dobson.
  • Liked to face: Larry Brown (.083 in 24 AB); Rick Burleson (.105 in 38 AB); John Lowenstein (.108 in 37 AB)
  • Hated to face: Rod Carew (.424 in 66 AB); Ben Oglivie (.500 in 24 AB); Tony Oliva (.370 in 54 AB)


  1. "I'm Ron Burgundy....go F-yourself San Diego!"

  2. Very cool blog. I was just going thru my 76 cards and I keep noticing cards online that I've never seen. Pat Dobson for one. I really dig his 1972 year with all of the wins and losses and that nice 2.65 era. This era of pitchers during the 70's still amaze me with all of their complete games and innings pitched. Like Wood, Lolich and Carlton for example. It's a shame they were paid peanuts in comparison to just a decade later.