Some of the Top Cards of 1976

Saturday, May 1, 2010

1976 Topps #426 - Bob Forsch

  • Bob Forsch pitched in the majors from 1974-1989, mostly for the St. Louis Cardinals. Forsch was a good-hitting pitcher with a lifetime batting average of .213. Bob was drafted by the Cardinals in 1968. He didn't start pitching in the minors until 1970 and he stayed in the minors until the middle of the 1974 season. Forsch was brought up in July of 1974. He appeared in 19 games (14 starts) and had a 7-4 record with a 2.97 ERA.
  • Bob became a main guy in the Cardinals' rotation and started 30 or more games every season (except the strike year of 1981) from 1975-1983. He was 15-10 with a 2.86 ERA in 1975. Bob also batted .308 during the '75 season. Forsch regressed in 1976 and went 8-10 with a 3.94 ERA.
  • Forsch had his biggest year wins-wise in 1977. He went 20-7 with a 3.48 ERA. In 1978 Bob pitched the first of his two no-hitters against the Philadelphia Phillies on April 16. Forsch went 11-17 with a 3.70 ERA in the 1978 season.
  • Bob's brother Ken threw a no-hitter against the Atlanta Braves on April 7, 1979 which made them the only brother duo to accomplish the feat. Bob and Ken Forsch: No-Hitters Are A Family Affair - August 1979 Baseball Digest. Bob had a record of 11-11 with a 3.83 ERA in 1979.
  • Forsch went 11-10 with a 3.77 ERA in 1980. He also won the NL Silver Slugger Award that season. In 1981 he started only 20 games because of the strike and was 10-5 with a 3.18 ERA.
  • Bob helped the Cardinals to an NL East (and eventual world) championship in 1982. During the regular season he was 15-9 with a 3.48 ERA. He pitched a 3-hit shutout in game 1 of the NLCS against the Braves. Bob started and lost games 1 and 5 of the World Series but the Cardinals still won the series in seven games.
  • Forsch pitched his second no-hitter on September 26, 1983 against the Montreal Expos. Bob Forsch: The Game I'll Never Forget - December 1989 Baseball Digest.  Bob went 10-12 with a 4.28 ERA in '83. Forsch missed three months of the 1984 season with an injury. He ended up 2-5 with a 6.02 ERA in 16 games (11 starts).
  • Bob pitched out of the bullpen for about six weeks during the 1985 season. He went 9-6 with a 3.90 ERA in 34 games (19 starts). Forsch wasn't very effective during the 1985 playoffs. He started game 4 of the NLCS and gave up two runs in 3.1 innings. Bob got off the hook when Ozzie Smith hit that memorable home run in the bottom of the 9th inning to win it for the Cards. He started and lost game 5 of the World Series and had some mop-up duty in the game 7 blowout game.
  • Forsch came back with a nice year in 1986. He went 14-10 with a 3.25 ERA in 33 starts. Bob went 11-7 with a 4.32 ERA in 30 starts in 1987 and also won the NL Silver Slugger Award (he batted .298 during the season). Bob was 1-1 with a 12.00 ERA in three relief appearances in the 1987 NLCS against the San Francisco Giants. In the 1987 World Series Bob was 1-0 with a 9.95 ERA in three games. The Cardinals released Forsch after the 1987 season but resigned him before spring training in 1988.
  • Bob split time between starting and relieving for the Cardinals at the beginning of the 1988 season. He pitched in 30 games (12 starts) and was 9-4 with a 3.73 ERA. On August 31 Forsch was traded to the Houston Astros for Denny Walling. Bob went 1-4 with a 6.51 ERA in six starts for the Astros in 1988.
  • Bob's last season was 1989. He went 4-5 with a 5.32 ERA in 37 games (15 starts) and retired after the season.
  • After his playing career Bob spent a lot of time playing in charity golf tournaments and doing work for the Cardinals' charitable foundation. Here is a "where are they now" article from 2002.
  • Bob wrote Tales from the Cardinals Dugout in 2003. Forsch thought Lou Brock was a first-class ballplayer because Brock would sit next to the younger players on the team bus and try to make them feel comforatble. Bob also said that he had something to brag about because he once pinch ran for Brock (Lou had a bad ankle). He is currently the pitching coach for the Billings Mustangs in the Cincinnati Reds' organization.
  • Liked to face: Steve Jeltz (.042 in 24 AB); Ozzie Smith (.073 in 41 AB); Willie McCovey (.115 in 26 AB)
  • Hated to face: Dickie Thon (.462 in 26 AB); Darryl Strawberry (.458 with 5 HR in 24 AB); Terry Kennedy (.455 in 33 AB)

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