Wednesday, March 31, 2010

1976 Topps #399 - Luis Melendez

  • Luis Melendez was a major league outfielder from 1970-1977. Luis was signed by the St. Louis Cardinals in 1968. He played in the minors from 1968-1970. The Cardinals called Melendez up in September 1970 after he hit .306 in AAA. Luis played in 21 games in 1970 and batted .300 in 70 at bats for the Cardinals.

  • Melendez was a backup outfielder and pinch hitter in 1971. He played in 88 games and batted .225 in 173 at bats. Luis shared center field with Jose Cruz in 1972 and 1973. In 1972 Melendez batted .238 in 118 games.  Melendez hit a grand slam against Ray Sadecki on June 24, 1972. Luis had his best year in 1973 when he hit .267 with 18 doubles in 341 at bats.

  • Luis was a backup OF and pinch hitter again in 1974. He batted .218 in 124 at bats in '74. Melendez got more playing time in 1975 (110 games, 291 at bats) and batted .265. Luis got off to a slow start in 1976 (3 for 24) and wasn't playing much for the Cardinals. On May 19 he was traded to the San Diego Padres for Bill Greif. Melendez batted .244 in 119 at bats for the Padres to finish the 1976 season.

  • Melendez spent most of the 1977 season in AAA Hawaii. He had a brief stint with the Padres in May and early June and was hitless in three at bats. Luis became a free agent after the 1977 season and signed with the Toronto Blue Jays. He was assigned to Toronto's AAA Syracuse club in 1978 and retired after the season at the age of 29.

  • Luis Melendez managed and coached in the minors after his retirement from playing. He coached for the Gulf Coast Phillies in 2009.

  • Liked to face: Randy Jones (.571 in 14 AB); Mike Marshall (.500 in 18 AB); Ray Sadecki (.480 in 25 AB)
  • Hated to face: Steve Renko (.000 in 11 AB); Don Sutton (.063 in 16 AB); Dave Giusti (.067 in 15 AB)

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

1976 Topps #398 - Dave Tomlin

  • Dave Tomlin pitched in the majors from 1972-1986. Dave was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in 1967. He pitched in the minors for several years and usually posted ERAs below 3.00. Dave was called up to the Reds for the first time in September 1972. He pitched in three games and had a 9.00 ERA in 4 innings.

  • In 1973 Dave was up and down between AAA Indianapolis and the Reds. He was 1-2 with 1 save and a 4.88 ERA in 16 games for the Reds. Tomlin pitched in one game in the 1973 NLCS and had a 16.20 ERA in 1.2 innings. After the 1973 season Tomlin and Bob Tolan were traded to the San Diego Padres for Clay Kirby.

  • The Padres used Tomlin mostly as a middle reliever in 1974. Dave went 2-0 with 2 saves and a 4.34 ERA in 47 games in 1974. Dave got more work in 1975. He pitched in 67 games and was 4-2 with 1 save and a 3.25 ERA in 67 games. Tomlin had similar years in 1976 (0-1, 2.84 ERA in 49 games) and 1977 (4-4, 3 saves, 3.01 ERA in 76 games. After the 1977 season Dave was traded (along with $125,000) to the Texas Rangers for Gaylord Perry. Tomlin didn't pitch for the Rangers during the season -- he was purchased by the Cincinnati Reds during spring training in 1978.

  • Tomlin went 9-1 with 4 saves and a 5.78 ERA in 57 games in 1978. Dave probably had his best year in 1979. He went 2-2 with a 2.62 ERA in 53 games in '79. He pitched in three games in the NLCS and didn't allow a run in three innings. In 1980 Dave went 3-0 with a 5.54 ERA in 27 games. He didn't pitch after August 9 and was released on September 2.

  • Dave signed with the Toronto Blue Jays in 1981 and spent the season in AAA Syracuse. Dave didn't make the Toronto ballclub in 1982 and was released at the end of spring training. He signed with the Reds and was sent to AAA Indianapolis. Tomlin was purchased by the Montreal Expos in early September and he pitched in one game for the Expos, allowing one run in two innings.

  • Tomlin was with Montreal's AAA Wichita club for most of the 1983 season and was purchased by the Pittsburgh Pirates on August 2. Dave appeared in five games for the Pirates in 1983 and had a 6.75 ERA in four innings. Tomlin was in AAA Hawaii for all of the 1984 season and most of 1985. He pitched one scoreless inning in a game for the Pirates at the end of the '85 season.

  • Dave became a free agent after the 1985 season and signed with the Expos. He pitched in 7 games for the Expos in July and August 1986 (5.23 ERA in 10.1 innings) and spent the rest of the season in AAA Indianapolis. Tomlin spent the 1987 season in Indianapolis and then retired.

  • After his playing career Dave became a pitching coach. He made various stops in the minors and was the pitching coach for the Boston Red Sox from 1998-2005. Dave became the manager of the Gulf Coast Red Sox in the Gulf Coast League in 2006 and is still there.

  • Liked to face: Terry Puhl (.000 in 17 AB); Dave Cash (.000 in 12 AB); Darrell Evans (.126 in 22 AB)
  • Hated to face: Rod Gilbreath (.600 in 15 AB); Joe Morgan (.526 in 19 AB); Dave Parker (.423 in 26 AB)

Monday, March 29, 2010

1976 Topps #397 - Tim Foli

  • Tim "Crazy Horse" Foli was an infielder (mostly shortstop) for five teams from 1970-1985. Foli was the first player selected in the 1968 draft. He was offered a scholarship at the University of Southern California but decided to play baseball instead. Tim played in the minors from 1968-1970 and earned a late-season call up in September of 1970. Foli batted .364 in five games for the Mets in 1970.

  • Foli didn't get much playing time in 1971. He batted .226 in 97 games. Before the 1972 season Tim was traded with Ken Singleton and Mike Jorgensen to the Montreal Expos for Rusty Staub. Foli became the starting shortstop for the Expos and played there from 1972 until the beginning of the 1977 season. He didn't have much power or speed, and he didn't walk very often either. But Tim was difficult to strike out. He led the NL in at bats per strikeout three times during his career. During his time with Montreal Foli posted averages between .234 and .264. Tim missed a month of the 1973 season when Bob Watson slid into him and broke his jaw. On April 21, 1976 Foli hit a single, a double, and a triple before the game was suspended. The next day the game resumed and Tim hit a home run to complete the cycle.

  • Tim got off to a rough start in 1977. He was batting .175 after 13 games when he was traded even-up to the San Francisco Giants for Chris Speier on April 27. Foli didn't do much better with the Giants (.221 in 104 games) and after the season he was sold to the Mets.

  • Foli was out with an injury for one month during the 1978 season. Tim batted .257 in 113 games. Foli started the 1979 season with the Mets but he and a minor leaguer were traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Frank Taveras. Tim had his best season in 1979, batting .291 with 23 doubles and 65 RBI. He was one of the pieces that helped the Pirates to the NL East championship and eventually the World Championship. Foli drove in a run in each of the three games in the Pirates' sweep of the Cincinnati Reds in the NLCS, then batted .333 in the World Series.

  • Foli continued as the regular shortstop for the Pirates in 1980 (.265) and 1981 (.247). After the 1981 season Tim was traded to the California Angels for Brian Harper. Tim was supposed to back up Rick Burleson at SS and fill in at the other infield positions, but he took over the regular SS job when Burleson tore his rotator cuff in mid-April. Foli batted .252 with a league-leading 26 sacrifices in 150 games in 1982. He didn't do much in the ALCS (.125 in 16 AB).

  • Tim's playing time diminished in 1983. Foli played in 88 games, batting .252, but he got in only one game after August 7. He was suspended for not being in uniform after a rain delay on September 11. After the season Tim was traded to the New York  Yankees for Curt Kaufman and cash.

  • Foli spent the 1984 season with the Yankees as a utility infielder. He batted .252 in 61 games. Tim must have liked that average -- he batted .252 each year from 1982-1984. After the 1984 season Foli was traded with Steve Kemp to the Pirates for Dale Berra, Jay Buhner, and Alfonso Pulido. Tim batted .189 in 19 games for the Pirates in 1985 and was released on June 17. That was it for Foli's career.

  • Tim became a coach after his playing career. He was the third base coach and infield coach for the Texas Rangers in 1986 and 1987. Tim managed Puerto Rico's Caguas team in the Caribbean World Series in the winter of 1987 but was fired after two games by general manager Feilx Milan for being disrespectful. Foli was the first base coach for the Milwaukee Brewers from 1992-1995. He was a coach with the Kansas City Royals in 1996, then managed and coached teams in the Mets' system from 1998-2000.

  • Foli had a three-year stint as a coach with the Cincinnati Reds from late 2000 to 2003. Tim got in a fight with fellow coach Ron Oester during that time. Tim took the 2004 season off then he became the manager of the Washington Nationals' AAA New Orleans Zephyrs. Foli was able to manage his son Dan (a minor league pitcher) for a little while in 2006. He continued to manage the Nats' AAA team (in both New Orleans and Syracuse) through the 2009 season. Tim is now a quality control coach for the Nationals.

  • Liked to face: Jon Matlack (.328 in 61 AB); Steve Carlton (.295 in 122 AB); Frank Viola (.545 in 22 AB)
  • Hated to face: Mike Garman (.000 in 11 AB); Tommy John (.081 in 37 AB); Doug Rau (.103 in 29 AB)

Sunday, March 28, 2010

1976 Topps #396 - Bill Lee

  • The back of Bill Lee's 1976 card looks cool with three years in a row of 17 wins. That was pretty much the peak of Lee's career. He had a couple more good years, but not in a run like 1973-1975.

  • Bill Lee was drafted out of the University of Southern California by the Boston Red Sox in 1968. Bill didn't take very long to get to the majors. He had an ERA of 1.58 with two single-A teams in 1968. In 1969 Bill was 6-2 with a 2.06 ERA in ten starts for AA Pittsfield when he was called up to Boston in June. Lee pitched in 20 games (1 start) for the Red Sox in 1969 and was 1-3 with a 4.50 ERA.

  • Lee didn't pitch very much in 1970. He appeared in 11 games (5 starts) and was 2-2 with a 4.62 ERA. Bill didn't pitch again in the 1970 season after getting hit for 5 hits and 5 runs in one inning against the Chicago White Sox on May 31. Lee had to fulfill his duties in the U.S. Army Reserve and missed the rest of the season.

  • In 1971 Lee was mostly a reliever -- he appeared in 47 games and only three of them were starts. Bill was 9-2 with two saves and a 2.74 ERA in '71. Bill was strictly a reliever in 1972. In 47 games Lee was 7-4 with five saves and a 3.20 ERA.

  • Lee became a starter in 1973 and had his best season. Bill was 17-11 with a 2.75 ERA in 38 games (33 of them starts) and had a save in one of his relief appearances. Lee was also named to the 1973 AL All Star team but he didn't pitch in the game.

  • Bill went 17-15 with a 3.51 ERA in 1974 and led the AL with 320 hits allowed. In 1975 Bill was 17-9 with a 3.95 ERA. He wasn't used in the 1975 ALCS, but he started two games in the 1975 World Series. Bill had a 3.14 ERA in the two starts but didn't get the decision in either game.

  • Lee missed almost two months of the 1976 season from late-May to mid-July. Lee injured his shoulder when he was hit by Graig Nettles during an on-field brawl and fell awkwardly. It was just about his toughest season. Bill went 5-7 with one save and a 5.62 ERA in 24 games (14 starts) in 1976.

  • In 1977 Lee didn't make a start until May 8 and was in and out of the rotation all season. Bill was 9-5 with one save and a 4.43 ERA in 27 games (16 starts) in '77.

  • Bill and a few other Red Sox players formed a faction called the "Buffalo Heads" that made things tough for Red Sox manager Don Zimmer. Lee called Zimmer "Gerbil" -- to this day every time I see a picture of Zim I think about the Gerbil thing. Bill also walked out on the team after Bernie Carbo was traded away. Altogether Lee was 10-10 with a 3.46 ERA in 24 starts. After the season Lee was traded to the Montreal Expos for Stan Papi. He was embarrassed about being traded and was quoted as saying, "Who wants to be with a team that will go down in history alongside the '64 Phillies and the '67 Arabs?".

  • Montreal manager Dick Williams was able to get Lee back on track and Bill was 16-10 with a 3.04 ERA in 33 starts for the Expos in 1979. In 1980 Bill missed a lot of time due to an odd injury. Lee claimed that he happened by a friend's apartment and wanted to surprise her by climbing the wall and tapping on the window. He fell and hurt his hip on an iron fence. Lee missed about five weeks and ended up 4-6 with a 4.96 ERA in 24 games (18 starts) in 1980.

  • Lee was a reliever and spot starter in 1981. He went 5-6 with six saves and a 2.94 ERA in 31 games (7 starts). Bill got into one game in the NLDS and one game in the NLCS and pitched a total of one inning without giving up any runs.

  • Bill was a reliever in 1982 and had pitched in seven games (0-0, 4.38 ERA) when he left the team on May 8 after his friend Rodney Scott was released. The Expos released Lee on May 9 and he never pitched in the majors again.

  • After his major league career Bill traveled a lot and played in various independent league and senior league games in the U.S. and in other countries. He wrote a few books and also owns The Old Bat Company in Vermont.

  • Liked to face: Barry Bonnell (.000 in 12 AB); Jerry Royster (.059 in 17 AB); Dave Collins (.105 in 19 AB)

  • Hated to face: Don Baylor (.459 in 37 AB); Willie Horton (.452 in 42 AB); John Ellis (.438 in 42 AB)

Bill Lee on baseball - 2008

Bill Lee on what happened to the Expos (he gets some years and team names confused, but he definitely has an opinion on what happened to the ballclub).

Saturday, March 27, 2010

1976 Topps #395 - Jim Wynn

  • I wonder how many home runs Jim Wynn would have hit if he played in a more homer-friendly home park. Jim Wynn was signed by the Cincinnati Reds in 1962. He played in Class D ball in 1962 then was drafted by the Houston Colt .45s in the "First Year Player Draft" in November 1962. Wynn played part of the 1963 season fon San Antonio in AA and was brought up to Houston in July. In 70 games Wynn batted .244 with 4 HR and 27 RBI. He played in the outfield as well as SS and 3B.

  • Wynn started the 1964 season with Houston but was sent to the minors in mid-June. He was brought up again in September. Altogether Jim batted .224 with 5 HR and 18 RBI in 67 games. Wynn was given the starting center field job for the newly re-named Astros and he batted .275 with 22 HR and 73 RBI in 157 games. A Big One for the Astros in the Wynn Column - October 1965 Baseball Digest. In 1966 Jim was batting .256 with 18 HR and 62 RBI when he was injured on August 1. He missed the remainder of the 1966 season.

  • Jim came back in 1967 and had his first All-Star season (he singled in a pinch-hitting appearance in the top of the 9th). Wynn batted .249 with a career-high 37 HR and 107 RBI. Name of the Game is Wynn - September 1967 Baseball Digest.

  • Wynn batted .269 with 26 HR and 67 RBI in 1968. Jim had another big year in 1969, batting .269 with 33 HR and 87 RBI. He also led the NL with 148 walks and scored 113 runs. Jim almost always managed to post on-base percentages at least 100 points above his batting averages.

  • In 1970 Wynn had a career high in batting average (.282) and hit 27 home runs. Wynn was the first player to hit a homer in the upper deck of the Astrodome when he homered off of Phil Niekro on April 12, 1970. The Astros reupolstered the seat that was hit by the ball with an image of a cannon. The team gave the seat to Wynn when the Astrodome was remodeled in the late 80s and Jim still keeps it in his living room.

  • Jim moved to right field in 1971 to make room for Cesar Cedeno and it was a tough year. On December 21, 1970 Jim was injured in a near-fatal stabbing during a domestic dispute and needed abdominal surgery. He batted .203 with 7 HR and 45 RBI in 123 games. Wynn fared much better in 1972 (.273 with 24 HR and 90 RBI). Better Days Ahead for Jim Wynn - June 1972 Baseball Digest. Jim slumped again in 1973, batting .220 with 20 HR and 55 RBI. After the 1973 season Jim was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers for Claude Osteen and a minor leaguer.

  • Wynn helped lead the Dodgers to the NL pennant in 1974. He finished 5th in NL MVP voting and went 1 for 3 with a run scored as the starting center fielder for the NL in the All Star Game. Jim batted .271 with 32 HR and 108 RBI in 1974. Jim batted only .200 in the 1974 NLCS but he walked nine times and had a .579 on base percentage. Wynn batted .188 with one HR in the World Series. The Game I'll Never Forget: Jimmy Wynn - March 2003 Baseball Digest.

  • Jim was the starting center fielder in the 1975 All Star Game and was 1 for 2 with a home run (he and Steve Garvey hit back-to-back homers off of Vida Blue in that game). Wynn injured his shoulder late in 1974 and had trouble making throws from center field. He played in 130 games in 1975 and batted .248 with 18 HR and 58 RBI. After the 1975 season Jim was packaged with several other players and traded to the Atlanta Braves for Dusty Baker and Ed Goodson.

  • Wynn spent one season (1976) in Atlanta as their left fielder. He batted .207 with 17 HR and 66 RBI. Although he batted only .207 Jim walked a league-leading 127 times and had a .377 on base percentage. After the 1976 season Jim was purchased by the New York Yankees. Wynn got a lot of playing time as the Yankees' DH early in the season and did well in April, but he tailed off badly in May and early June. Jim went into a 4 for 62 slump which included an 0-for-32 stretch. Jim was batting .143 with 3 HR in 30 games when he was released on July 14. Wynn was signed by the Milwaukee Brewers on July 26 and played in 36 games for the Brewers. Altogether Jim batted .175 with 13 HR in 1977. Wynn was released after the 1977 season.

  • Jim is now the post-game analyst for the Astros' games on FSN Houston. His number 24 was retired by the Astros in 2005. Here is a tribute to Jim Wynn.

  • Liked to face: Frank Linzy (.350 with 4 HR in 20 AB); Nolan Ryan (.375 with 4 HR in 24 AB); Mike Corkins (.545 in 22 AB)
  • Hated to face: Vida Blue (.000 in 12 AB - but he did homer off of him in the 1974 All Star Game); Lynn McGlothen (.045 in 22 AB); Jon Matlack (.122 in 41 AB)

Friday, March 26, 2010

1976 Topps #394 - Fran Healy

  • Fran Healy was a catcher in the major leagues from 1969-1978. Healy was signed by the Cleveland Indians in 1964 (according to Baseball Reference) or in 1965 (according to the back of this card). Fran played in Cleveland's minor league system from 1965-1968 without getting a call to the majors. The Kansas City Royals drafted Healy in the expansion draft and assigned him to AAA Omaha. Fran got a shot at the end of the 1969 season and it was pretty much all-or-nothing. In his ten at bats Healy struck out five times and got four base hits.

  • Healy was sent back to Omaha for the 1970 season and after the season was traded to the San Francisco Giants for Bob Garibaldi. Fran spent the 1971 season as the Giants' backup catcher and batted .280 in 93 at bats. He was not used by the Giants in the NLCS. Healy was the backup again in 1972 and batted .152 in 99 at bats. After the season Fran was traded to the Kansas City Royals for Greg Minton.

  • Fran got more playing time with the Royals. In 1973 he batted .276 in 279 at bats. Healy had his only season as a starting catcher in 1974. He played in 139 games and batted .252 with 9 HR. Fran caught both of Steve Busby's no-hitters--one in 1973 and one in 1974. Fran split time with Buck Martinez and Bob Stinson in 1975. Healy batted .255 in 56 games in '75.

  • Healy's playing time really diminshed in 1976. He played in only eight games in the first 5-6 weeks of the season (.125 in 24 at bats) and on May 16 Fran was traded to the New York Yankees for Larry Gura. He ended up in another situation where he wasn't going to play much since 1976 MVP Thurman Munson was the Yankee starting catcher. Fran batted .267 in 120 at bats for the Yankees in 1976 but wasn't used in the postseason.

  • Healy got very little playing time in 1977 --- Munson played in 149 games that season. Fran batted .224 in 27 games and again wasn't used in the postseason. In 1978 Healy struck out in his only at bat and was released by the Yankees on May 16.

  • After his playing career Healy had a long career as a broadcaster in New York. He started in 1979 as a Yankees radio broadcaster and continued with them through the 1983 season on both radio and televsion. From 1984-2005 Fran did broadcasts for the New York Mets. He now hosts "The Game 365" on MSG Network.

  • Liked to face: Terry Forster (.455 in 11 AB); Pat Dobson (.429 in 14 AB); Bill Lee (.400 in 25 AB)

  • Hated to face: Bert Blyleven (.071 in 14 AB); Nolan Ryan (.095 in 21 AB); Catfish Hunter (.125 in 24 AB)

Thursday, March 25, 2010

1976 Topps #393 - Paul Mitchell

  • Paul Mitchell pitched in the majors from 1975-1980. Mitchell was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1968 but didn't sign. He was then drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in 1971. Paul pitched in the minors from 1972-1975, mostly for their AAA Rochester team.

  • Mitchell was 10-1 with a 2.06 ERA in 14 starts for Rochester in 1975 when he was called up to the Orioles in late June. He pitched in 11 games (4 starts) for the Orioles in 1975 and was 3-0 with a 3.63 ERA. After the 1975 season Paul was traded with Mike Torrez and Don Baylor to the Oakland A's for Reggie Jackson, Ken Holtzman and a minor leaguer.

  • Paul was 9-7 with a 4.25 ERA in 26 starts for the A's in 1976. In 1977 Mitchell had a rough go of it with the A's. He pitched in five games (3 of them starts) and was 0-3 with a 10.54 ERA. Paul spent some time in the minors and didn't fare very well either. On August 4 Mitchell was purchased by the Seattle Mariners. He was inserted into Seattle's starting rotation and was 3-3 with a 4.99 ERA in nine starts.

  • Mitchell was 8-14 with a 4.18 ERA in 29 starts for the Mariners in 1978. Paul started the 1979 season with the Mariners and was 1-4 with a 4.42 ERA in 10 games (6 starts) when he was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers on June 7 for Randy Stein. Paul pitched in 18 games (8 of them starts) for the Brewers in '79 and was 3-3 with a 5.76 ERA.

  • Paul was an occasional starter and reliever for the Brewers in 1980. He went 5-5 with one save and a 3.53 ERA in 17 games (11 starts). He also spent about 7 weeks pitching for AAA Vancouver in 1980.

  • At the end of spring training in 1981 Mitchell was released by the Brewers. He hooked on with the New York Yankees' AAA Columbus team and pitched in seven games but Paul didn't make it back to the majors.

  • Liked to face: Kevin Bell (.000 in 13 AB); Reggie Jackson (.136 in 22 AB); Rusty Staub (.118 in 17 AB)
  • Hated to face: Rod Carew/Larry Hisle (.563 in 16 AB); Roy Smalley (.483 in 29 AB); Mike Hargrove (.480 in 25 AB)

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

1976 Topps #392 - Checklist 265-396

Woo hoo -- a checklist! Here are a few questions:

  • Did you mark your checklists?
  • How did you mark your checklists? Did you fill the whole box or did you put a line or check through each box?
  • When sorting your cards, where did the checklists go?

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

1976 Topps #391 - Jerry Hairston

  • Jerry Hairston's family has had several major league players. As the card says, Jerry's father was a catcher for the Chicago White Sox in 1951 and his brother Johnny was a catcher for the Cubs in 1969. Two of Jerry's sons (Jerry  Jr. and Scott) have also played in the majors.

  • Jerry had two stints in the major leagues. His first stint was from 1973-1977 and the second was from 1981-1989. Hairston was a 3rd round draft pick of the Chicago White Sox in 1970.  He progressed through the minor leagues and was first promoted to the majors in July 1973 after batting .347 in AAA Iowa during the first half of the season. Jerry batted .271 in 210 at bats for the White Sox in 1973.

  • Jerry also played in Mexico during the winter and met his wife there. They were married on January 6, 1974. Hairston started the 1974 season with the White Sox but after starting the season with a .157 batting average he was sent back to Iowa in late June. Jerry batted .373 in 42 games at Iowa and he was brought back to the White Sox in late August. Hairston ended up batting .229 in 45 games for the White Sox in 1974.

  • Jerry didn't get much playing time for the White Sox at the beginning of the 1975 season (5 games in the first month) and was sent to AAA Denver. Hairston batted .367 in 40 games in Denver and came back to Chicago in late June. Hairston batted .283 in 69 games for the White Sox in 1975.

  • In 1976 Jerry again split time between AAA and the majors. He managed to post good on base percentages in the minors. In fact, his lowest OBP in the minors was .374 and he had a few seasons of .400 and even .500 OBPs. His biggest knocks where that he didn't hit many homers or steal many bases. Hairston ended up batting .227 in 119 at bats for the White Sox in 1976.

  • Hariston started the 1977 season with the White Sox and batted .308 in 13 games. On June 13 he was sold to the Pittsburgh Pirates and batted .192 in 52 at bats, mostly as a pinch hitter. Before the 1978 season Jerry was purchased by the Durango club (Mexican League). Hairston played in the Mexican league from 1978 to the end of the 1981 season. On September 10, 1981 Hairston was purchased by the White Sox. Jerry batted .280 in 25 at bats to finish the 1981 season.

  • Hairston was mostly a pinch hitter and designated hitter for the second phase of his career. In 1982 he batted .233 in 90 at bats. His best year in the 1980s was 1983 when he batted .294 with 5 home runs in 126 at bats. On April 15 Hairston broke up a perfect game by Milt Wilcox of the Detroit Tigers by singling with 2 out in the 9th inning. Jerry was 0 for 3 in the 1983 ALCS.

  • Jerry batted .260 with 5 HR in 227 at bats in 1984 and .243 in 140 at bats in 1985. Hairston batted .271 in 225 at bats in 1986 and .230 in 126 at bats in 1987. Jerry was released during spring training in 1988 but signed with the White Sox on August 31 and was 0 for 2 as a pinch hitter. He was released at the end of the season and signed again with the White Sox on September 1, 1989. Jerry was 0 for 3 in 1989 and then retired.

  • Jerry is currently the hitting coach of the rookie league Bristol White Sox. He managed the club from 2003-2005, then was the hitting coach for Great Falls in the Pioneer League in 2006. Hairston has been the hitting coach for Bristol since 2006.

  • Liked to face: Dave Goltz (.571 in 14 AB); Dan Petry (.467 in 15 AB); Bert Blyleven (.364 in 22 AB)

  • Hated to face: Mike Witt (.000 in 14 AB); Fergie Jenkins (.067 in 15 AB); Ray Burris (.143 in 14 AB)

Monday, March 22, 2010

1976 Topps #390 - Don Gullett

  • Don Gullett pitched for the Cincinnati Reds from 1970-1976 and for the New York Yankees in 1977 and 1978. When he was in high school Don once pitched a perfect game and struck out 20 of the 21 batters he faced. Gullett was drafted in the first round by the Reds in 1969. At the age of 18 Gullett was 7-2 in single-A ball in 1969 and earned a shot with the Reds in 1970.

  • Gullett was mostly a reliever for the Reds in 1970. He was 5-2 with six saves and a 2.43 ERA in 44 games (2 starts) in 1970. Don appeared in two games in the 1970 NLCS, didn't allow a run in 3.2 innings, and got a save. In the 1970 World Series Gullett made three appearances and had a 1.35 ERA in 6.2 innings. How Don Gullett Became An Instant Celebrity - January 1971 Baseball Digest.

  • Don joined the Reds' starting rotation in 1971 and led the NL with a .727 winning percentage. This was impressive considering the Reds had a down year in 1971. Don was 16-6 with a 2.65 ERA in 35 games (31 starts). In 1972 Gullett had his only losing season. He was 9-10 with a 3.94 ERA in 31 games (16 starts). Don was 0-1 with a 8.00 ERA in two starts in the 1972 NLCS. He started game 4 of the 1972 World Series and allowed one run in seven innings, but he didn't get the decision.

  • Gullett won a career-high 18 games in 1973. He was 18-8 with two saves and a 3.51 ERA in 45 games (30 starts). Don started and lost game 2 of the 1973 NLCS, but he gave up only one run in six innings. It was Don's luck that Mets pitcher Jon Matlack shut out the Reds on two hits in that game. Gullett also appeared as a reliever in two other games in the NLCS.

  • Don had career highs in starts (35) and innings pitched (243) in 1974. He was 17-11 with a 3.04 ERA. How Forkball Helped Don Gullett - October 1974 Baseball Digest.

  • In 1975 Gullett missed two months from mid-June to mid-August because of a broken thumb suffered when he was hit by a Larvell Blanks line drive. He ended up 15-4 with a 2.42 ERA in 22 starts in 1975 and led the NL in winning percentage (.789). Gullett started game 1 of the 1975 NLCS and pitched a complete-game victory. He started games 1 (losing pitcher), 5 (winning pitcher), and 7(no decision) of the 1975 World Series and got the first of four straight World Series rings.

  • Gullett missed a few starts in 1976 and also pitched in only one game in August. Anatomy of an Arm Problem - December 1976 Baseball Digest. He had an 11-3 record with a 3.00 ERA in 23 games (20 starts) in 1976. Don won game 1 of the 1976 NLCS and game 1 of the 1976 World Series. After the 1976 season Gullett became a free agent and signed with the New York Yankees.

  • Don led the AL with a .778 winning percentage and was 14-4 with a 3.58 ERA in 22 starts in 1977. He was roughed up in the 1977 ALCS (losing pitcher in game 1) and in the 1977 World Series (no decision in game 1 and losing pitcher in game 5).

  • The 1978 season was Don's last one. He didn't pitch until June 4. Don made eight starts (4-2, 3.63 ERA) and then went down with a rotator cuff injury. He wasn't able to come back from the injury and the Yankees finally released him after the 1980 season. Gullett had a heart attack in 1986.  Vanished Big League Season Still Haunt Don Gullett - July 1986 Baseball Digest.

  • Don later became a pitching coach and was the pitching coach for the Reds from 1993-2005.

  • Liked to face: Chris Cannizzaro (.000 in 18 AB); Mike Lum (.042 in 24 AB); Wes Parker (.074 in 27 AB)
  • Hated to face: Hank Aaron (.462 with 7 HR in 26 AB); Ken Singleton (.435 in 23 AB); Darrell Evans (.423 in 26 AB); Steve Garvey (.370 with 5 HR in 46 AB)

Sunday, March 21, 2010

1976 Topps #389 - Glenn Adams

  • Glenn Adams played major league baseball from 1975-1982. Adams was the first round draft pick of the Houston Astros in 1968. Glenn progressed through Houston's minor league system and steadily improved as a hitter. Adams played in the minors from 1968-1971 but was released by the Astros before the 1972 season. Glenn signed with the San Francisco Giants before the 1973 season. He played in AA ball in 1973 and then tore up the Pacific Coast League in 1974. Adams led the PCL in batting average and knocked in 105 runs for the AAA Phoenix Giants.

  • Adams started the 1975 season with Phoenix. After batting .299 in 19 games he was brought up to San Francisco as a 27-year-old rookie and batted .300 in 90 at bats. Glenn was a good hitter but wasn't a good glove man. The Giants didn't have a place for him since he couldn't play the field well. In 1976 Adams batted .243 in 74 at bats, mostly as a pinch hitter. After the 1976 season Glenn was sold to the Minnesota Twins.

  • Glenn played most of the remainder of his career as a DH. Adams batted .338 in 95 games in 1977. On June 26, 1977 Adams had eight RBI in one game. In 1978 Glenn tailed off and batted .258 in 116 games. He bounced back in 1979 by batting .301 in 119 games. He didn't have a whole lot of power -- he usually hit 6-9 homers a year and was in the teens in doubles every year.

  • In 1980 Glenn had his last productive season. He batted .286 in 99 games for the Twins. Adams had a big drop-off in 1981 and batted .209 in 72 games. After the 1981 season Glenn became a free agent and signed with the Toronto Blue Jays during spring training in 1982. The Blue Jays sent Adams to AAA Syracuse where he batted .330. Adams was brought up at the end of July and batted .258 in 30 games at DH. Glenn retired after the 1982 season.

  • After his playing career Adams managed in the Cleveland Indians organization from 1986-1988. He then was the minor league hitting coordinator for the Twins from 1989-1994. Adams then moved to the Chicago Cubs organization as the hitting coach for their AAA Iowa Cubs from 1995-2000. Glenn was the minor league hitting coordinator for the Seattle Mariners from 2001-2006. He has been the hitting coach for the Detroit Tigers' Erie Sea Wolves since 2007.

  • Liked to face: Dave Stieb (.563 in 16 AB); Dan Spillner (.500 in 22 AB); Brian Kingman (.417 in 24 AB)
  • Hated to face: Bruce Kison (.000 in 10 AB); Len Barker (.050 in 20 AB); Milt Wilcox (.100 in 30 AB)

Saturday, March 20, 2010

1976 Topps #388 - Stan Perzanowski

  • Stan Perzanowski pitched in five seasons in the majors from 1971-1978. Stan was drafted by the Chicago White Sox in 1968. He made several stops in the minors before getting his first shot with the White Sox in 1971. Perzanowski was 0-1 with one save and a 12.00 ERA in 5 games for the White Sox in 1971.

  • Stan spent the next three seasons pitching in the minors for Tucson and Iowa. He came back up to the Whte Sox for a couple of weeks in May 1974 and had a 19.29 ERA in 2.1 innings. In February 1975 Stan was traded to the Texas Rangers for Steve Dunning.

  • In 1975 Perzanowski split the season between AAA Spokane and the Rangers. Stan was 3-3 with a 3.00 ERA in 12 games (8 starts) for the Rangers. He pitched in five games (0-0, 10.03 ERA) for the Rangers in 1976 before being traded to the Cleveland Indians for Fritz Peterson in late May. The Indians sent Stan to AAA Toledo to finish the 1976 season.

  • Late in spring training in 1977 Stan was sent to the California Angels to complete a previous trade for Bill Melton. Perzanowski was sent to AAA Salt Lake City, where he had a 6.10 ERA in 22 starts. Stan was released on August 16, 1977.

  • In 1978 Stan hooked up with the Minnesota Twins. He pitched for AAA Toledo until late July. Stan pitched for the Twins for the remainder of the 1978 season and was 2-7 with a 5.24 ERA in 13 games (7 starts).

  • Perzanowski was released by the Twins in February of 1979. Later in the 1979 season he pitched in four games for AAA Toledo and then retired.

  • Stan is a cousin of pitcher Ron Perranoski.

Friday, March 19, 2010

1976 Topps #387 - Mike Miley

Mike Miley was a shortstop for the California Angels in 1975 and 1976. Miley was the #1 draft pick of the Angels in 1974. Mike had a good year in AA in 1974, batting .288 in 84 games. Miley started the 1975 season with AAA Salt Lake City and was called up to the Angels in July. Mike batted .174 in 79 games for the Angels in 1975.

Miley was with Salt Lake City for most of the 1976 season. He was a September call-up for the Angels and batted .184 in 38 at bats.

Mike died in a one-car accident in Baton Rouge, Louisana on January 6, 1977. Mike Miley: One More Tragedy for the Angels - Baseball Digest April 1977.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

1976 Topps #386 - Ed Goodson

  • Ed Goodson was originally drafted by the Houston Astros in 1966 but he didn't sign. After playing for East Tennessee State University and becoming an All-American in his sophomore year, Goodson was drafted by the San Francisco Giants (3rd player overall) in the first round in 1968. Ed played in the minors from 1968-1970 and had a brief trial with the Giants at the end of the 1970 season (.273 in 11 at bats).

  • Goodson was in the minors for most of the 1971 season. He batted .190 in 42 at bats during his month with the Giants in June/July 1971. Ed batted .389 in 32 games for AAA Phoenix in 1972 and was recalled in mid-May. Goodson batted .280 in 150 at bats for the Giants in 1972. He didn't get much playing time since Willie McCovey was in front of him at first base.

  • Ed had his best year in 1973. He played third base for the Giants and batted .302 with 12 home runs in 384 at bats. Ed's season was shortened by a broken finger suffered in August. His 1973 season was good enough to merit a Kellogg's card in 1974. Goodson split time between first base and third base in 1974 and batted .272 in 298 at bats. Ed missed a month of the 1974 season due to an injury.

  • Goodson started slowly in 1975. He was batting .207 in 39 games when he was traded to the Atlanta Braves on June 11 for Craig Robinson. Ed batted .211 in 47 games for the Braves to finish the 1975 season. In November 1975 Goodson and Dusty Baker were traded to the LA Dodgers for Lee Lacy, Jerry Royster, Tom Paciorek, and Jimmy Wynn.

  • The Dodgers used Goodson mainly as a pinch hitter. In 1976 Ed batted .229 in 118 at bats. Goodson batted .167 in 66 at bats in 1977. Ed was 0 for 1 in the 1977 NLCS and struck out in his only at bat in the 1977 World Series.

  • Goodson didn't make the Los Angeles ballclub in 1978 and was released during spring training. He played 33 games for Cleveland's AAA Portland club, batting .327. Ed retired after the 1978 season.

  • Ed returned to Grayson County in Virginia in 1982 to teach and coached Grayson County High School's baseball team for 12 years. He later became a jobs specialist with the Jobs for Virginia Graduates program at the same high school. Goodson was commended in a Virginia House Joint Resolution in 2003.
  • Goodson and current Phillies manager Charile Manuel grew up near each other in Virginia. Here is an article about their connection.
  • Liked to face: Ron Schueler (.500 in 20 AB); Don Sutton (.355 in 31 AB); Jack Billingham (.321 in 28 AB)
  • Hated to face: J.R. Richard (.091 in 22 AB); Dock Ellis (.095 in 21 AB); Rick Reuschel (.156 in 32 AB)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

1976 Topps #385 - Mickey Lolich

  • Mickey Lolich holds numerous pitching records for the Detroit Tigers. Lolich signed with the Detroit Tigers in 1958. He pitched in the minors until he was called up to the Tigers in 1963. Lolich appeared in 33 games (18 of them starts) in 1963 and was 5-9 with a 3.55 ERA.

  • Lolich was mostly a starter for the rest of his time in Detroit. In 1964 he was 18-9 with two saves and a  3.26 ERA. Mickey was 15-9 with a 3.44 ERA in 1965. Part Pitcher, Part Human - June 1965 Baseball Digest. Lolich had a rough year (for him) in 1966. Both his hits per 9 innings and walks per 9 innings increased by one. Mickey ended up 14-14 with a 4.77 ERA. Mickey bounced back in 1967 and led the AL with six shutouts. He was 14-13 with a 3.04 ERA.
  • The 1968 season was "The Year of the Pitcher," but Mickey's regular season record didn't really differ much from his other seasons. He was 17-9 with a 3.19 ERA. Lolich really came through in the World Series -- he pitched three complete-game victories and was named the World Series MVP. He allowed a total of only five runs in those three games.
  • Mickey was named to his first All Star team in 1969 (he wasn't used in the game) and went 19-11 with a 3.14 ERA. In 1970 Lolich led the AL in losses -- he went 14-19 with a 3.80 ERA.
  • Lolich had his two best years in 1971 and 1972. In 1971 he led the AL in wins (25), games started (45), complete games (29) and strikeouts (308). Mickey was 25-14 with a 2.92 ERA, earned the save in the 1971 All Star Game, and finished second to Vida Blue in Cy Young Award balloting. Lolich was 22-14 with a 2.50 ERA in 1972, pitched two scoreless innings in the All Star Game, and finished third in AL Cy Young Award voting. Will the Cy Young Award Elude Lolich Again? - August 1972 Baseball Digest.
  • Mickey was 16-15 with a 3.82 ERA in 1973. He led the AL in losses in 1974, going 16-21 with a 4.15 ERA and a league-leading 38 home runs allowed. In 1975 Lolich was 12-18 with a 3.78 ERA. Mickey Lolich: An Unsung Strikeout Leader - September 1975 Baseball Digest.
  • After the 1975 season Mickey was traded with Billy Baldwin to the New York Mets for Rusty Staub and Bill Laxton. Lolich went 8-13 with the Mets in 1976 and he retired after the season.

  • Lolich opened a doughnut shop in suburban Detroit in 1977. Mickey also appeared as a security guard in the horror film "The Incredible Melting Man." He came back to baseball in 1978 and signed with the San Diego Padres. Mickey pitched in 20 games (2 starts) in 1978 and was 2-1 with a 1.56 ERA. In 1979 Lolich pitched in 27 games (5 starts) and was 0-2 with a 4.74 ERA. Lolich retired for good after the 1979 season. Mickey Lolich: He Was A Reliable, Durable Pitcher - February 1994 Baseball Digest

  • After his career Mickey ran his doughnut shop for several years and then sold the business and retired. He now does charity work and some coaching for the Tigers' fantasy camp in Florida.

  • Liked to face: Don Mincher (.118 in 34 AB); John Romano (.125 in 40 AB); Lou Brock (.000 in 14 AB)

  • Hated to face: Hector Lopez (.467 in 30 AB); Dick Allen (.452 in 31 AB); Cesar Tovar (.419 in 86 AB)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

1976 Topps #384 - Philadelphia Phillies

  • That guy on the left in the middle row has a pretty serious shirt collar.

  • Things finally came together for the Philadelphia Phillies in 1976. They won the NL East but were swept in the NLCS by the Cincinnati Reds. I liked the Phillies and rooted for them when they weren't playing the Giants or the Reds.

  • Danny Ozark managed the Phillies from 1973-1979. The Phillies struggles in Danny's first season, finishing in last place. But they steadily improved and won the NL East three years in a row (1976-1978). The team didn't play well in 1979 and Ozark was let go after 133 games (65-67) with the Phillies in 4th place. Ozark managed the San Francisco Giants for the last 56 games in 1984 (24-32). Danny was a coach with the LA Dodgers from 1965-1972 and again from 1980-1982. He passed away at the age of 85 in 2009.
  • Team Record: 101-61 (1st in NL East, 9 games ahead of Pittsburgh)
  • Attendance: 2,480,150 (2nd in NL)
  • Team Batting: .272 (2nd in NL)
  • Team HR: 110 (2nd in NL)
  • Team ERA: 3.08 (3rd in NL)
  • Team Fielding: .981 (2nd in NL)
  • NL All Stars: Greg Luzinski (starting LF); Bob Boone, Dave Cash, Larry Bowa, Mike Schmidt
  • Gold Glove Awards: Jim Kaat (P); Mike Schmidt (3B); Garry Maddox (OF)
  • NL Leaders: Dave Cash (AB - 666, triples - 12); Mike Schmidt (home runs - 38, hit by pitch - 11, strikeouts - 149); Greg Luzinski (hit by pitch - 11) Steve Carlton (winning pct. - .741)
Team Leaders:
  • Batting Average - Garry Maddox (.330)
  • Home Runs - Mike Schmidt (38)
  • RBI - Mike Schmidt (107)
  • Runs - Mike Schmidt (112)
  • Stolen Bases - Larry Bowa (30)
  • Wins - Steve Carlton (20)
  • Losses - Jim Kaat (14)
  • Saves - Ron Reed (14)

Monday, March 15, 2010

1976 Topps #383 - John Ellis

  • John Ellis was a catcher/first baseman from 1969-1981. Ellis was signed by the New York Yankees in 1966. He played in the minors from 1967-1969 and was promoted to the Yankees after batting .333 with 8 HR in 38 games at AAA Syracuse. John batted .290 in 22 games for the Yankees in 1969.

  • The Yankees had Thurman Munson at catcher and Danny Cater at first base in 1970. Both of them hit over .300 so there wasn't much room for Ellis. John played in 78 games and batted .248 with 7 HR in 226 at bats. In 1971 Ellis split time with Cater at first base and batted .244 in 83 games.

  • The Yankees traded Cater after the 1971 season but they had Ron Blomberg to play first in '72. Ellis played in 52 games in 1972 and batted .294. After the 1972 season John was traded to the Cleveland Indians as part of the big trade that sent Graig Nettles to the Yankees.

  • Ellis got a chance to play every day in Cleveland and had his two best years in 1973 and 1974. John batted .270 with 14 HR and 68 RBI in 1973. In 1974 he batted .285 with 10 HR and 64 RBI. Ellis lost some playing time in 1975 when the Indians promoted Alan Ashby. John batted .230 with 7 HR in 92 games in '75. After the 1975 season Ellis was traded to the Texas Rangers for Ron Pruitt and Stan Thomas.

  • John was off to a great start in 1976 (.419 in 11 games) but he was injured and didn't play after May 9. For the rest of his career Ellis was a part-time C/1B and DH. John batted .235 in 49 games in 1977 and .245 in 34 games in 1978.

  • In 1979 Ellis played in over 100 games for the last time. He batted .285 with 12 HR and 61 RBI in 111 games (62 DH, 30 1B, 7 C). John was mostly a pinch hitter / DH in 1980 and batted .236 in 73 games. Ellis had a rough year in 1981 -- he batted .136 in 23 games. Ellis was released by the Rangers during spring training in 1982 and retired.

  • Liked to face: Bill Lee (.438 in 32 AB); Roger  Moret (.421 in 19 AB); Ken Brett (.375 in 24 AB)
  • Hated to face: Jim Palmer (.056 in 36 AB); Steve Stone (.000 in 12 AB); Paul Splittorff (.031 in 32 AB)

Sunday, March 14, 2010

1976 Topps #382 - Matt Alexander

  • Matt Alexander played in parts of nine seasons (1973-1981) with three teams. Matt was mostly an outfielder but he also saw action in the infield. The majority of his appearances were as a pinch runner (thus the nickname "Matt the Scat"). Alexander was drafted by the Chicago Cubs in 1968. He played in the minors in 1968 and 1969 and then missed two years due to military service. Matt played in the minors again in 1972 and 1973 and was promoted to the Cubs late in 1973 after batting .303 for AAA Wichita. He played in 12 games and batted .200 in five at bats.

  • Alexander spent most of the 1974 season with the Cubs but wasn't used very much. He played in 45 games and batted .204 in 54 at bats. Matt was sent back to Wichita in late July and played in 30 games there at the end of the season.

  • In 1975 Matt started the year in Wichta. He played in 7 games there before being traded to the Oakland A's for a minor leaguer on April 28. The A's liked to have a "designated runner" type of player on the team and Matt fit the bill in1975. He played in 63 games but only got to the plate 11 times (he was 1 for 10 with a walk). Alexander stole 17 bases in 27 attempts and scored 16 runs in 1975. Alexander was only 1 for 30 (.033 average) in 1976. He played in 61 games and stole 20 bases in 27 attempts.

  • The A's released Alexander during spring training in 1978. He had come down with a case of hepatits during the off-season and wasn't ready for the regular season. Alexander attended barber college with some money from the GI bill. He needed only 24 more days to qualify for his baseball pension. Matt didn't play until he was signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates on September 1. Pirate manager Chuck Tanner managed Matt in Oakland and remembered what he could do on the basepaths. Alexander appeared in seven games (all as a pinch runner), stole four bases, and scored two runs.

  • In 1979 Matt split time between AAA and the Pirates. He appeared in 44 games for the Pirates and batted .538 (7 for 13) with 16 runs scored. Matt also stole 13 bases in 14 attempts. He pinch ran in one game in the NLCS and scored a run. Alexander also pinch ran in one game in the World Series and was caught stealing.

  • Alexander appeared in 37 games in 1980 and was 1 for 3 as a batter. He scored 13 runs and stole 10 bases in 13 attempts. Matt was in the minors for most of 1981 except for a week in May and a few weeks in September. He appeared in 15 games and batted .364 in 11 at bats. The Pirates sold Matt to the Mexico City Tigers (Mexican League) in March 29, 1982. He played in Mexico through the 1984 season then retired. Matt worked at odd jobs for a few years, then worked at Libbey Glass in his hometown of Shreveport from 1992-2007. He also helps as an assistant coach at Huntington High School in Shreveport.

  • Here is Matt's SABR biography.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

1976 Topps #380 - Bobby Bonds

  • Bobby Bonds really moved around a lot in the latter part of his career. He played 14 seasons in the majors from 1968 through 1981 and ended up playing for eight different teams. Bonds was signed by the San Francisco Giants in 1964. He played in the minors from 1965-1968 and was called up to San Francisco after batting .370 in the first three months of 1968 for the AAA Phoenix Giants.

  • Bonds played in 81 games in 1968 and batted .254. In 1969 Bobby led the NL in runs (120) and strikeouts (187) while batting .259 with 32 HR and 90 RBI. Bonds batted .302 with 26 HR and 78 RBI in 1970 while scoring 134 runs and leading the NL in strikeouts again with 189. The Giants weren't sure whether to use Bonds at the leadoff spot to take advantage of his speed or to bat him further down in the order to take advantage of his power.

  • The Giants won the NL West in 1971, which was the only year in which Bonds would appear in the post season. Bobby did his part during the season by batting .288 with 33 HR, 102 RBI, and 110 runs scored. Bonds was 2 for 8 in the 1971 NLCS. Bobby also was an All Star for the first time (he appeared as a pinch hitter and struck out) and won his first Gold Glove award.

  • Bobby had a down year (for him) in 1972. He batted .259 with 26 HR and 80 RBI. He scored 118 runs and stole 44 bases in 50 attempts. Bobby's best season was probably 1973. He finished third in NL MVP voting, was an NL All Star (he homered and doubled in the game and was the game's MVP), and won his second Gold Glove. Bonds batted .283 with 39 HR and 96 RBI. He also led the NL with 131 runs scored. Bobby Bonds Takes A Giant Step Forward - December 1973 Baseball Digest

  • Bonds slipped a bit in 1974. He batted .256 with 21 HR and 71 RBI. He won the Gold Glove for the last time. After the 1974 season Bobby was traded to the New York Yankees for Bobby Murcer. This would begin the "transient" part of Bobby's career. It's A New Ballgame for Bobby Bonds - April 1975 Baseball Digest

  • Bonds had a good year for the Yankees in 1975. He batted .270 with 32 HR and 85 RBI and was an AL All Star (he didn't play in the game). After the 1975 season Bonds was traded to the California Angels for Mickey Rivers and Ed Figueroa.

  • Bobby was injured in 1976 and didn't play after August 8. He batted .265 with 10 HR and 54 RBI in 99 games in '76. Will This Be The Year for Bobby Bonds? - June 1977 Baseball Digest. Bonds bounced back in 1977 and batted .264 with 37 HR and 115 RBI. Bobby Bonds Pays Off with Speed and Power! - December 1977 Baseball Digest. After the 1977 season Bonds, Rich Dotson, and Thad Bosley were traded to the Chicago White Sox for Brian Downing, Dave Frost, and Chris Knapp.

  • Bonds didn't stay with the White Sox very long. He played in 26 games (.278, 2 HR , 8 RBI) before being traded to the Texas Rangers for Rusty Torres and Claudell Washington on May 16. Bobby batted .265 with 29 HR and 82 RBI for the Rangers. The 1978 season was Bobby's fifth (and final) 30 HR/30 SB season. After the 1978 season he was traded with Len Barker to the Cleveland Indians for Larvell Blanks and Jim Kern.

  • Bobby had his last good year in 1979. He batted .275 with 25 HR and 85 RBI. After not being able to come to terms on a new contract, Bobby demanded a trade. The Indians traded Bonds to the St. Louis Cardinals after the 1979 season for John Denny and Jerry Mumphrey. Bobby Bonds - The 'Goodbye Guy' - April 1980 Baseball Digest Bonds had a poor season for the Cardinals in 1980, batting only .203 with 5 HR and 24 RBI in 86 games. The Cardinals released Bonds after the 1980 season. .

  • Bobby signed with the Rangers as a free agent on April 17, 1981. He was assigned to the Rangers' AAA Wichita club and batted .244 in 35 games. The Chicago Cubs purchased Bonds on June 4. He started the game on June 4 but was injured in the first inning and came out of the game. Bobby's next action wouldn't come until August (after the strike). Bonds played in 45 games for the Cubs in 1981 and batted .215 with 6 HR and 19 RBI. Bobby was released after the 1981 season.

  • Bonds signed with the Yankees in May 1982. He went to AAA Columbus but batted only .179 in 28 games and was released in late June.

  • Bonds was a hitting instructor for the Indians from 1984-1987. He became a coach and a scout for the Giants when his son Barry signed with them in 1993.

  • Liked to face: Bob Stanley (.500 in 20 AB); Bob Veale (.450 in 20 AB); Steve Arlin (.378 in 37 AB)
  • Hated to face: Bill Travers (.000 in 19 AB); Lowell Palmer (.091 in 22 AB); Tom Seaver (.118 in 51 AB)

1976 Topps #381 - Denny Doyle

  • Denny Doyle was coming off of his biggest year when this card came out. The Boston Red Sox had acquired him in June 1975 and Denny went on to play a solid second base all the way through the World Series. Since I was rooting for the Reds in the World Series I got mad every time Doyle got a hit.

  • Denny Doyle mostly played second base in the  majors from 1970-1977. Denny was signed by the Philadelphia Phillies in 1965. He played in the minors from 1966-1969 and earned a promotion to the majors after batting .310 for AAA Eugene in 1969.

  • In 1970 Doyle batted .208 in 112 games for the Phillies as a 26-year-old rookie. He improved to .231 in 95 games in 1971. Denny became the starting second baseman for the Phillies in 1972, batting .249 in 123 games. On July 18 Doyle broke up a no-hitter by San Diego's Steve Arlin by singling with 2 out in the bottom of the 9th inning. Manager Don Zimmer had pulled in his third baseman to protect against the bunt and Denny blooped a single over the third baseman's head. It was the closest any Padre pitcher has ever come to a no-hitter. In 1973 Doyle batted .273 in 116 games. The Phillies had Dave Cash coming up so Doyle was traded to the California Angels after the 1973 season for players to be named later and Billy Grabarkewitz.

  • Denny batted .260 in 147 games in 1974. In 1975 the Angels went with Jerry Remy as their starting second baseman, so Doyle didn't get much playing time. He had played in only eight games with the Angels when he was traded to the Red Sox on June 14 for a minor leaguer and cash. The Red Sox made Doyle their starting second baseman and the move paid big dividends. Denny batted .310 in 89 games and hit a career-high 21 doubles. Doyle batted .273 in the 1975 ALCS and .267 in the World Series. He also received one 10th place vote for AL MVP in 1975. Denny Doyle: An Unsung Hero of the Red Sox Pennant Drive - February 1976 Baseball Digest.

  • Doyle was the starting second baseman for the Red Sox in 1976 (.250 in 117 games) and in 1977 (.240 in 137 games). The Red Sox picked up Remy to play second base so Doyle was expendable again. Denny was cut loose during spring training in 1978 and retired.

  • Now Denny Doyle is more famous for the baseball camps and training programs that he and his brothers (Brian and Blake) run in Winter Haven, Florida. They founded Doyle Baseball in 1978 and 37 camp alumni have made it to the majors. The camp got off to a good start when Denny's brother Brian (also a second baseman) had that great World Series for the Yankees in 1978.

  • Here is Doyle's SABR biography.

  • Liked to face: Bob Gibson (.464 in 28 AB); Al Fitzmorris (.425 in 40 AB); Clay Kirby (.405 in 37 AB)

  • Hated to face: Catfish Hunter (.108 in 37 AB); Don Sutton (.130 in 23 AB); Don Wilson (.132 in 38 AB)