Friday, October 23, 2020

The High Numbers: Rare, or Scam?

Today’s lesson is on the 7th series "high numbers". 

For decades we have been told that these cards are rare, and therefore are required to be expensive. But recently I found a photo of a full sheet of these 7th series cards. The sheet is 12 rows of 11 cards per row for a total of 132 cards per sheet.

Looking at the sheet, you can see that the first 5 rows are repeated on rows 6, 9, 10, 11, and 12, so that makes for 7 unique rows (rows 1-5, 7, 8) of cards (77 cards). 

The checklist only shows 76 cards. The discrepancy between the 77 unique cards and the 76 cards on the checklist is the checklist itself. It was numbered within the 6th series (first appearing there) and is reprinted in the next series (as all checklists from series 2 onward were). 

So, on this sheet there are 77 unique cards, and 55 of them are double-printed. That’s an astounding 71%! 

I decided to see what the other series were doing, and only the 6th series is similar. Contrast that to the first series, where there are 109 unique cards. On the same 132-card sheet, that makes for only 23 double-printed cards, or 21%. 

I never realized that the 1st series is about 25% larger than the others.  That explains why that series had more cards per team (which I only previously looked at in terms of Phillies cards).

With all those double-prints, the only possible explanation for the 7th series “rarity” (and therefore high prices) is that maybe Topps didn’t print as many cards for that final series, having turned their resources to printing and distributing football cards by that time of year. (Either that, or just outright greed by the card aftermarket.) 


Saturday, September 26, 2020

Jim Beauchamp (#307)

Well, it's been eleven years (yesterday) since I started blogging here, with the 1967 set being my first blog. That set included 490 individual player cards, and for 11 years I have featured 486 of those players on one set blog or another. The 4 remaining are Bob Barton, Jim Beauchamp, Aurelio Monteagudo, and Carroll Sembera.

I’m not sure why Jim Beauchamp even has a card in this set. Since the Braves acquired him in May 1965, his major-league action consisted of 4 games in 1965, no games in 1966, and 4 games (all pinch-hitting appearances prior to May 6) in 1967. I guess somebody at Topps liked the Braves, which is why we see cards for Beauchamp, Tommie Aaron, and Dave Nicholson, despite little or no playing time. 

Beauchamp was signed by the Cardinals in 1958, and made his big-league debut in September 1963. He was traded to the Colt .45s in February 1964, and to the Braves in May 1965. 

After 3 seasons of non-use, he was traded to the Reds in October 1967 (with Mack Jones and Jay Ritchie) for Deron Johnson. Jim had more playing time with the Reds in ’68 and ’69 than he did since his days with the Colt .45s. 

He returned to Houston in December 1969, but by the following June was traded to the Cardinals for pitcher George Culver. 

In October 1971, Jim was part of an 8-player trade with the Mets.  After 2 seasons in New York, he was released during spring training 1974, and played that season with the Cardinals’ AAA team before retiring. 

Beauchamp passed away in 2007 at age 68.

Sunday, June 21, 2020

Chris Zachary (#212)

Next-to-last alphabetically (and almost next-to-last on this blog) is Chris Zachary, who pitched for the Astros, Royals, Cardinals, and Tigers.

Zachary was signed by the Houston Colt .45s in 1962, but did not play that season. In 1963, he started his pro career at the top, appearing in 22 games (7 starts) for the Colts, and fashioning a 2-2 record in 57 innings.

From 1964-67, he spent most of his time with the club’s AAA team in Oklahoma City, but also saw some action in Houston each season.

After playing all of 1968 in triple-A, he was purchased by the Royals shortly after the expansion draft. Although he played 8 games with Kansas City in 1969, he spent most of that season and all of 1970 in the minors.

In July 1970, he was traded to the Cardinals for reliever Ted Abernathy, but the Cards did not bring him up until May 1971. That year he pitched in 23 games, the first time he logged more than 10 games since his rookie 1963 season.

After the 1971 season, he was traded to the Tigers for pitcher Bill Denehy, and again had another good season, playing in 25 games (all but 1 in relief) while logging a 1.41 ERA over 38 innings.

Just before the 1973 season, he was traded to the Pirates for backup catcher Charlie Sands. He pitched in 6 games but played most of the year in triple-A (starting 25 games).

In December 1973 Chris was traded to the Phillies for catcher Pete Koegel. He started 24 games for their AAA team in Toledo before retiring at season’s end.

Zachary passed away in 2003 at age 59.

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Things I Like But You Don't

I recently discovered that I’m running out of players to post on my '67 blog, so I am jumping on a recent blogging topic (better late than never)  a) to pontificate, and b) to delay having the card well run dry.

Things I Like That (many of) You Don’t 

1. 1990 Donruss 

2. 1991 Donruss 

3. 1991 Fleer

What’s a vintage-card fan like me doing liking these junk-wax sets? Simply because they are the first sets I collected with my sons. My oldest son was 3 in 1990, and whenever I went to the Wawa or other convenience stores, I always came back with several rack packs. He and I would spend hours lining up all his red '90 Donruss cards on our living room floor.

In 1991 we did it all again, except the cards were blue and yellow, and my younger son joined in too. Oh, we also collected a smaller amount of '90 Fleer and '91 Topps, but they seemed bland when compared to the splash of color in the above sets. (By 1992 they grew tired of baseball cards - preferring GI Joe cards instead.)

4. Sets with cards for every player. Yep, that's what they did back in the 60s and 70s.

5. Checklist cards – It helped that yellow was my favorite color back then. It was a great way to keep track of who you had and who you needed. That the next series' checklist was included in the previous series also gave you a preview of who was to come next.

6. Team cards – Loved those photos super-imposed on bright yellow backgrounds! Plus, you got the rundown of the whole pitching staff on the back (albeit last year's pitchers).

7. Manager cards – They had either tales of these old-timers' playing careers, or funny cartoons on the back.

8. 1970 Topps – No one seems to like the gray borders. I wasn't crazy about them either at first, but there’s a lot of good new photos – a refreshing change from 1969.

9. Multi-player cards. These seemed to peak in the 1967 set.

10. All-Star cards (separate from their base cards).

Things I Don’t Like That (many of) You Do

1. Cards after 1972 (except the first 3 sets mentioned above, and 1981 Topps). 1972 was the last set I chased pack-by-pack as a kid. In recent decades I have collected all the Phillies cards up through 1993 (and again from 2008-2012). I also have factory sets from 1981 and 1987-92, but I have little interest in those cards (and the players shown on them) now. I can’t see myself ever chasing another set from 1973 onward.

The rest of these are pretty much covered by what I just said above, but I’ll continue anyway.

2. Chrome/gold/black/refractors/parallels/relics/blah-blah-blah. It's all just marketing nonsense. (And how do you know your relic actually came from a game-worn jersey? Because the card company said so?)

3. Intentionally omitting half a team's roster, just so they can have multiple cards of stars.

4. Short prints to create scarcity. 

5. Putting non-baseball subjects on baseball cards. 

6. Intentionally including retired players in current sets. I loved Mickey Mantle, but he shouldn't be in a current-player set after 1969.

7. Unlicensed, logo-less cards. Why do they bother?

8. The obsession with inserts. 

9. The obsession over “official” rookie cards. If it's the player's first card, it's his rookie card! For decades, no one needed MLB sanctioning things with their "RC" stamp of approval.

10. Graded cards.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Orlando Martinez (#504)

I just realized today when looking at the back of this card that Orlando Martinez hadn't played in the major leagues since 1962, when he saw action in 37 games (mostly as a pinch-runner). I have to ask then, "Why does he have a card?" Also, my recollection was that his position on this card was "C-INF".

And what is it with Topps and Atlanta Braves' scrubs? Tommie Aaron had a card in the 1968 set despite not playing regularly since 1963, and with only 8 games in early-1965 since then. Jim Beauchamp (who we will see on this blog 2 posts from now) had a card in the 1967 set although didn't play in the majors in 1966. Ex-Braves' outfielder Dave Nicholson had a card in the 1969 set, yet his only time in the majors since 1966 was a 10-game stint in September 1967. 

Orlando "Marty" Martinez was signed by the (old) Washington Senators in 1960, and played seven seasons for the Senators/Twins in the minors. He was primarily a shortstop, but he also saw considerable playing time at 3B, 2B, and catcher, both in the minors and the majors. He also pitched 21 games in the minors, and 1 inning with the 1969 Astros.

After the 1966 season the Braves selected him in the Rule 5 draft. He played in 44 games in his rookie season, including 17 starts at shortstop.

In 1968 his playing time almost tripled, as he started 49 games at shortstop, 31 at 3B, 13 at 2B, and 6 behind the plate. He was truly valuable to the team that season. Too bad he only hit .230.

Martinez was traded to the Astros in December 1968 for 3rd baseman Bob Aspromonte. He continued in his role as backup infielder for the next 2 seasons, although playing much less than he did in 1968.

In '69 he mostly filled in at shortstop and left field, but also a few games at 3B and behind the plate. In 1970 he was mostly at SS and 3B.

In 1971 his playing time decreased even further. The Astros replaced shortstop Denis Menke with rookie Roger Metzger, who needed less time off than Menke did for the past 2 seasons.

After the '71 season, Marty was on his way to the Cardinals. He only played 7 games for St. Louis in 1972, and in late May was traded to the Athletics for outfielder Brant Alyea.

Two months later he was flipped to the Rangers (with 2B Vic Harris) for 1st baseman Don Mincher and infielder Ted Kubiak. 1972 was his last season in the majors.

He played for the Rangers' AAA and AA teams from 1973-80.

Martinez was also the interim manager for the Seattle Mariners for one game in 1986.

In the 1980s he was a coach and a scout for the Mariners, signing Edgar Martinez and Omar Vizquel, among others.

He passed away in 2007 at age 65.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Sandy Alomar (#561)

It's time for a high-numbered card.

Sandy Alomar was a second baseman who played for 15 seasons (1964-78) for the Braves, Mets, White Sox, Angels, Yankees, and Rangers.  This is his only card as a Met, the team he played the least amount of time for.

Alomar was signed by the Milwaukee Braves in 1960, and was a shortstop until switching over to 2nd base during the 1965 season. His major-league debut came in September 1964 with the Braves.

Sandy split the 1965 season between Milwaukee and their AAA team in Atlanta.

The Braves moved to Atlanta in 1966, but by early-June Alomar had moved on to Richmond, the new home of their triple-A team.

1967 was an unusual year for Alomar:
 - 2/25: sent to the Astros to complete an earlier deal (Eddie Mathews to Houston for Bob Bruce and Dave Nicholson).
 - 3/24: Traded to the Mets for Derrell Griffith.
 - 8/15: sent to the White Sox to complete an earlier deal (Ken Boyer to Chicago for J.C. Martin).

Sandy was always a bench player until the 2nd half of 1968, when he took over the Sox' 2nd base job.

Following his May 1969 trade to the Angels for Bobby Knoop, Alomar was the Halos' regular 2nd baseman for the next 4 ½ years, that string coming to an end in the closing weeks of 1973. While an Angel, he started 134, 152, 134, 150, and 103 games from 1969-73. He also made the 1970 All-Star team.

The Angels acquired 2nd baseman Denny Doyle from the Phillies in the 73/74 off-season, so Alomar rode the bench in 1974 until his contract was purchased by the Yankees in July. Sandy regained a starting job in the Big Apple for the rest of 1974 and all of 1975.

It was deja-vu all over again for him in 1976. The Yankees traded for Willie Randolph in the 75/76 off-season, so Alomar was back on the bench, although he did start a handful of games in July and Auguist.

Sandy was traded to the Rangers before the 1977 season, and spent his last two years as a bench player. He backed up 2B Bump Wills in '77 but rarely played the field in '78 and was used mostly as a pinch-runner (at age 34!). Alomar was released after the 1978 season.

Later, he was a coach for the Padres (1986-90), Cubs (2000-02), Rockies (2003-04), and Mets (2005-09).

His sons Sandy Jr and Roberto made their major-league debuts with the Padres while he was a coach there.

Saturday, December 21, 2019

Collecting the 1967 Phillies

Wow, it's been 2 1/2 months since I've posted any baseball cards. I needed something to bounce me out of my post-season doldrums, and it came to me today.

There were about 25 player cards per team (one per player on the roster - imagine that!), plus a team card, manager, 1 to 3 rookie stars cards, and a multi-player card for 11 (?!?) of the teams.

With 20 teams, the set started off featuring a card for each team every 20 cards or so. That started to vary once you got to the World Series and League Leaders cards. Also, any trades that occurred after Topps finished their set layout (but before finalizing the photos) caused that player to be shown on his new team.

The Phillies had 31 cards in the 1967 set: 27 player cards, team, manager, multi-player, and 1 rookie card. There was also a Phillie featured on a 7th series National League Rookies card. This worked out to 4 cards per series, except for series 1 and 5.

I collected most of my 1967 cards in that season. (Only the 7th series cards eluded me until the 1980s.) So here is how the Phillies' players unfolded for me during the summer of 1967:

1st Series:
I'm not sure why there are 6 Phillies cards in this series.  All the players were on the team in 1966, so it wasn't a case of last-minute team-switching.

2nd Series:

3rd Series:

4th Series:

5th Series:
I think Gomez was a last-minute addition to the Topps set.  He was signed by the Phillies over the winter, not having played MLB for several seasons.  Francona was acquired in early-April, so was probably originally planned to be a Cardinals' card.

6th Series:

7th Series:
I didn't get my first cards for these 4 Phillies until the 1968 set. (By then, Bunning was a Pirate.)

Saturday, October 5, 2019

Larry Jaster (#356)

Larry Jaster pitched for the Cardinals from 1965 to 1968, before finishing up his career with the Expos and Braves.

He was signed by St. Louis in 1962 and pitched for 4 seasons in the Cards' farm system, then made his major-league debut in September 1965. (The back of this card says "the young lefthander’s debut in the majors last season…", so Topps was off by 1 year.)

After struggling early-on in 1966, he spent most of May and June back in the minors before returning in late-June. Larry started his last 15 games, and ended up with a nice 11-5 record, led the league with 5 shutouts (all against the NL champion Dodgers), and finished 4th in the Rookie of the Year voting. The team’s rotation was led by Bob Gibson, then the other three (all with similar production) were Jaster, Al Jackson, and Ray Washburn. Jaster's edge was his age – 6 to 8 years younger than the other 2 guys.

Jaster looked to be a fixture in the rotation for years to come, but Steve Carlton (who made 9 starts in the last 2 months of 1966) and Dick Hughes (the 29-year-old rookie who seemingly came out of nowhere) soon passed him. Larry only started 23 of his 34 games (and was probably helped by the fact that Gibson missed 6 weeks with a broken leg) and by Labor Day (with Gibson's return) he was out of the rotation altogether.

With Jackson traded and Hughes in the bullpen, Larry was the #5 starter in 1968.  That didn’t save him from the expansion draft, where he was selected by the Expos. He had a dismal 1-6 record for an obviously bad expansion team, and was traded to the Braves in the off-season for pitcher Jim Britton.

Jaster began the 1970 season with Atlanta, but by late-June was sent down to AAA, where he played for the rest of 1970 and all of 1971-74 - his only further big-league time was 5 games with the Braves in September 1972.

After his playing career he was a minor-league pitching coach for the Braves and Orioles.


There were 490 single-player cards in the 1967 set. With Jaster's post, I have now featured all but 11 of those players on one of my blogs. The players from the 1967 set yet to be blogged are:

Sandy Alomar - 2B, Mets
Bob Barton - C, Giants
Jim Beauchamp - OF, Braves
Rob Gardner - P, Mets
Jim Gosger - OF, Athletics
Orlando Martinez - INF, Braves
Aurelio Monteagudo - P, Reds
Chico Salmon - INF, Indians
Carroll Sembera - P, Astros
Jim Stewart - INF-OF, Cubs
Chris Zachary - P, Astros

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

10 Years Already? / Joe Moeller

Today marks the 10th anniversary of this 1967 blog (my first of many). I found Blogger a day earlier when I happened across this post on the 1969 set blog (which was run by someone else at the time). I made a non-anonymous comment there, but didn't actually have a blogger account at that time.

The next day I thought, "Hey, this is something I could really get into!" and signed up. Within a few days I had set up 3 blogs: this one, the 1968 set blog, and a 1960s Baseball blog.  The next month, a 1966 set blog soon followed, and a year later my 1963 and 1970 blogs launched. I was hooked!

I took ownership of the 1969 set blog from the previous owner in January 2012, after it had been idle for a few years.

Yes, it's a lot of blogs, but I have an interest in all the sets (well, not enough in the 1963 set, as you've probably noticed). At the 5-year mark I took a 12 month break, although at the time of my 5-year post, I wasn't sure if I would be returning.

A few months ago I was considering whether to take another break at this 10-year mark, but there's still a few projects I want to complete (1969 Final Cards, the remaining 5 team reviews, the '69 and '70 League Leaders) before I go on hiatus again. I have been slacking off this past summer, so what I thought I could finish by this week hasn't happened.

Although there's 160 unposted players and managers listed in my blog index, I am only planning on blogging around 100 of them. After that, who knows?


So who's the high-profile player I saved for my 10th anniversary post? (Oops!) Ok, Joe Moeller will have to do.

Joe Moeller was signed by the Dodgers in 1960. He had an 8-year career (1962-71), all with the Dodgers. He was primarily a relief pitcher, except in '62, '64, and '70.

Although he spent most of 1962 and all of 1964 with Los Angeles, he was back in the minors for all of 1963 and 1965. Joe returned to the Dodgers for all of 1966, but continuing the trend, he spent parts of '67 and '68 in the minors. Along the way, the Astros selected him in the Rule 5 draft after 1967 (hence his 1968 "Houston" card) but returned him to the Dodgers the following Spring.

Joe managed to stay with the Dodgers for all of 1969-71, but those were his final big-league days.

He pitched in the minors for the Padres and Phillies in 1972 and 1973, before retiring.

 I also have Joe's 1968 card:

and this "variation" that was the first post on my 1968 blog.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Dave Morehead (#297)

Dave Morehead had an 8-year career from 1963 to 1970.  After 6 seasons with the Red Sox, he played his final 2 years with the Kansas City Royals.

Morehead was signed by Boston in 1961 and made his big-league debut in April 1963 by shutting out the Senators. A month later he pitched a 1-hitter against Washington. (If only all his starts could be against the Nats!)

For his first 3 seasons he was a starting pitcher, making around 30 starts per season, and pitching from 165 to 190 innings per year. His strikeout totals those years were 136, 139, and 163. Although he led the AL with 18 losses in 1965 (the Sox lost 100 games that year), he remained in the starting rotation, and pitched a no-hitter against the Indians in September.

The bottom fell out of his career in 1966. As the back of his card says, he had arm trouble limiting him to just 12 games. This continued to plague him through the 1969 season. Whereas he was routinely starting 30 games and pitching 160+ innings, he averaged just 11 games and about 34 innings for the Sox from 1966-68, while spending a good deal of time in the minors.

After the 1968 season, he was selected by the Royals in the expansion draft. He spent part of 1969 in the minors, and although appearing in 21 games for KayCee, only 2 were starts, and he pitched only 33 innings while compiling a 5.73 ERA.

Dave finally bounced back in 1970, starting 17 of his 28 games and posting a 3.62 ERA in 121 innings. Although only compiling a 3-5 record, his other stats were good compared to his previous 4 seasons.

Arm troubles resurfaced, and he was released during spring training in 1971.

Saturday, August 31, 2019

Born on the Same Day - 6/1/1942

First a commercial: A few months ago I set up a blogroll blog here. It currently has over 230 blogs listed, and some shortcuts on the sidebar. 

Another installment in my "Born on the Same Day" series, featuring players who were born on the same day (!) and year. 

This is post #26 in the series: Randy Hundley and Ken McMullen - both born on 6/1/1942.

After a few games with the Giants in '64 and '65, Randy Hundley had a long career as the Cubs' #1 catcher from 1966 to 1973. Injuries slowed him down, and he played sporadically in his last 4 seasons for the Twins ('74), Padres ('75), and Cubs again ('76-'77).

Ken McMullen began his career with the Dodgers as a backup from 1962-64. Traded to the Senators with Frank Howard, Ken was the Nats' starting 3rd baseman for 5 season, then moved on to the Angels in 1970, anchoring the Halos' hot corner for 3 seasons. He returned to the Dodgers as a bench player from 1973-75, then finished up with the Athletics and Brewers from 1976-77.

Sunday, July 21, 2019

The 1967 Athletics

Last week on my 1969 blog I reviewed the first Royals team to play in Kansas City. Today on this blog I am reviewing the last Athletics team to play in Kansas City.

I started collecting baseball cards in May 1967. Before that time, I has NO IDEA who any of the players were, except for four: Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris, who were pop culture figures in the early-1960s so I must have heard of them on the TV; the Phillies' Johnny Callison, because I remembered some kids referring to him in elementary school recess (“I wanna be Johnny Callison!”); and Harmon Killebrew, because my elderly neighbors' grandchildren would come visit them from Minnesota every summer, and they would go on about Killebrew and the Twins.

My knowledge of the team names probably came from my brother and me having those child’s baseball jackets, with all the team logos on them. When I started collecting cards in May 1967, I can remember the first Athletics card I got was Phil Roof. I had never heard of the Athletics, probably because they were not on that jacket I had a few years earlier. I remember saying to my brother “Who are the Athletics? Are they a minor-league team? Do they make minor-league cards too?” (That is how na├»ve I was at the time.) Thinking back now, I probably never heard of the Astros or Angels either, but I don’t remember questioning them.

In their final season in Kansas City, a few good things were happening. They were building a foundation of good, young starting pitchers (Jim Hunter, Jim Nash, Johnny Odom, Chuck Dobson, and Lew Krausse), it was Rick Monday’s rookie season, and Reggie Jackson made his major-league debut in June. Otherwise they were a bad team, finishing in last (10th) place with a 62-99 record.

Here are the pitchers, in order of innings pitched:

Jim Hunter (13-17), Jim Nash (12-17), and Chuck Dobson (10-10) were the top three starters. Lew Krausse (7-17) (hey, what’s with this "losing 17 games" trend?) and John Odom (3-8) each started about half their games. All five were between the age of 21 and 24 and surprisingly, all were righthanders. In fact, the only lefties on the staff were Paul Lindblad and Tony Pierce.

Paul Lindblad was primarily a reliever but also made 10 starts. Rookie Tony Pierce appeared in 49 games (43 in relief). Jack Aker pitched in 57 games (all in relief) and led the staff with 12 saves. Diego Segui was the 9th and last member of the "core 9" pitchers (all the remaining hurlers pitched in less than 16 games), working 70 innings in 36 games. Segui was the "old man" of that group at age 29.

Roberto Rodriguez (see rookie stars card below) appeared in 15 games, mostly in August and September. These next three were veterans at the end of their careers: Jack Sanford was acquired from the Angels in mid-June for Roger Repoz, and wrapped up his 12-year career with 10 games for the A’s. Bill Stafford spent most of the season in triple-A, but pitched his final 14 major-league games in August and September.  Bob Duliba finished up with 7 games in April and early-May. George Lauzerique and Bill Edgerton also pitched for the Athletics in 1967.

The starting eight:

Phil Roof had started 119 of the final 128 games in 1966, but got more of a break in 1967, starting 107 games. Rookie Ramon Webster started 78 games, splitting the job with Ken Harrelson and Danny Cater. Rookie John Donaldson was called up in early June and started all but 10 games the rest of the season. Bert Campaneris led the team with 145 starts.

Danny Cater was all over the place, starting 51 games at 3rd base, 54 in left field, and 33 at 1st base. Jim Gosger was actually the 3rd outfielder but he split his time at all 3 positions (LF/34 starts, CF/27, RF/29). Although his 841 outfield innings were double that of 4th outfielder Cater, he played less in left field than Cater.

Rookie Rick Monday took over the center field job in game #10 and never looked back. He was named to the Topps All-Rookie team, but Topps forgot to put the trophy on his 1968 card. Mike Hershberger was the Athletics’ starting right fielder from 1965-67. In 1968 Reggie Jackson came along, and that was it for Mike's playing time.

Here are the subs, in order of at-bats:

Dick Green was the starting 2nd baseman until Donaldson arrived in early-June. He made 48 starts at 2B and another 47 starts at 3B. Ken Harrelson was the team's regular 1st baseman in 1966, but began the '67 season with the Senators. He returned in early-June and started most games at 1B in July and August, until he was released in late-August following Al Dark's firing.

Although Joe Nossek played in the same number of games (87) that he did in when he was the primary center fielder in 1966, with Monday onboard Joe was the 5th outfielder in ’67. Sal Bando started 38 games at 3rd base in mid-May and September, but spent the rest of the season in triple-A.

Reggie Jackson had 2 stints with Kansas City in 1967, starting 18 games in left field in June, and 13 games in right field in September. Ted Kubiak played in 53 games as a rookie, mostly as a pinch-hitter or defensive replacement, although he started 14 games at shortstop.

Dave Duncan was the Athletics' backup catcher in June and September, appearing in 34 games. Roger Repoz started 6 of the first 9 games in center field, then Rick Monday took over. Roger found a seat on the bench until his mid-June trade to the Angels for Jack Sanford.

Ken Suarez started 22 games as Phil Roof’s backup, although he had no playing time during Duncan’s June stint with the team. Ed Charles began the season as the starting 3rd baseman, but was traded to the Mets in early-May when Bando was called up. Ossie Chavarria played 38 games as a backup infielder, also starting 10 games at 2nd base. Joe Rudi played 19 games in April and September, but spent most of the season in the minors. Allen Lewis played in 34 games, mostly as a pinch-runner.


Al Dark was the manager for 1966 and most of 1967, but was fired in late-August. He returned to manage the A’s in ’74 and ’75, and with better players finished in first both years, winning the World Series in 1974. Wes Stock retired before the season and became the pitching coach.  He was activated for 1 game (May 7th). Gil Blanco and Rene Lachemann were in the minors for all of 1967.

Rookie Stars cards:

Randy Schwartz had cups of coffee in September ‘65 and ’66, but didn’t play for the Athletics again. Tim Talton played 46 games, mostly as a pinch-hitter.  He was with the team for the entire season, but did not play from mid-May to mid-July. George Lauzerique played 3 games in September.

The back of the 1968 team card:

Transactions from the end of the 1966 season to the end of 1967: 
10/14/66 - Larry Stahl selected by the Mets off waivers.

11/28/66 - Bill Landis drafted by the Red Sox in the rule 5 draft.
11/28/66 - Tommie Reynolds drafted by the Mets in the rule 5 draft.
11/28/66 - Drafted Dave Roberts from the Pirates in the rule 5 draft.

11/29/66 - Manny Jimenez selected by the Pirates in the minor league draft.
11/29/66 - Rick Joseph selected by the Phillies in the minor league draft.

04/07/67 - Returned Dave Roberts to the Pirates.

04/11/67 - Released Wes Stock.

05/02/67 - Signed Wes Stock as a free agent.

05/10/67 - Traded Ed Charles to the Mets for Larry Elliot.

05/16/67 - Released Wes Stock.

06/09/67 - Purchased Ken Harrelson from the Senators.

06/15/67 - Traded Roger Repoz to the Angels for Jack Sanford and Jackie Warner.

08/14/67 - Sold Joe Grzenda to the Mets.

08/15/67 - Released Jack Sanford.

08/20/67 - Fired manager Al Dark. Named coach Luke Appling as interim manager.

08/25/67 - Released Ken Harrelson.

10/15/67 - General Manager Eddie Lopat resigned.

10/19/67 – Purchased Andy Kosco from the Twins.

11/21/67 - Traded Ron Tompkins to the Reds for Floyd Robinson and Darrell Osteen.

11/28/67 - Drafted Ed Sprague from the Cardinals in the rule 5 draft.
11/28/67 - Jim Holt drafted by the Twins in the rule 5 draft.
11/28/67 - Andy Kosco drafted by the Yankees in the rule 5 draft.
11/28/67 - Skip Lockwood drafted by the Astros in the rule 5 draft.
11/28/67 - Ken Suarez drafted by the Indians in the rule 5 draft.
11/28/67 - Bill Edgerton selected by the Angels in the minor league draft.

12/03/67 - Purchased Jim Pagliaroni from the Pirates.

Team reviews remaining: Mets, Tigers, Astros, Angels, Padres.

Friday, July 12, 2019

Wade Blasingame (#119)

Wade Blasingame pitched for 10 seasons from 1963-72. The first half of his career was with the Braves, and the last half with the Astros. (He also pitched 12 games for the Yankees in his final season.)

He was signed by the Milwaukee Braves in 1961, and made his major-league debut in September 1963.

Blasingame was a member of the Braves' starting rotation from 1964 until June 1966, when he moved to the bullpen. His best season was 1965, when he tallied 16 wins and 117 strikeouts. (He never again reached 10 wins or 100 strikeouts.)

In June 1967 he was traded to the Astros for pitcher Claude Raymond, and resumed regular starting duty with Houston. Blasingame was a reliever for the 1968 and 1969 seasons before returning to the starting rotation for '70 and '71.

1972 was his final season, and not a very good one at that.  After only pitching 8 innings over 10 games, the Astros traded him to the Yankees in early June. He did no better in the Bronx, only pitching 17 innings over 12 games.

Blasingame was traded to the Cardinals during spring training in 1973, but never played for them. He pitched for AAA teams in the Cardinals', Cubs', and Padres' organizations from 1973-74 before retiring.

Apparently, he became a lawyer after his playing career!

Sunday, June 9, 2019

Barry Moore (#11)

Barry Moore pitched for the Senators in the late-1960s. The record shows he had a 6-year career, but it was more like 4 ½ years. After making his debut on 5/29/65, he didn’t play in the majors again until late-July 1966.

Moore was signed by the Senators in 1962. He joined the starting rotation in July 1966, and over the next 3 ½ seasons started 80 of his 102 games with the Nats. Barry and Frank Bertaina were the southpaws, complementing Camilo Pascual, Joe Coleman, Phil Ortega, and Dick Bosman.

In April 1967, Barry pitched a 1-hitter against the Twins.

After the 1969 season, Moore and pitcher Dennis Higgins were traded to the Indians for 2nd baseman Dave Nelson and pitchers Horacio Pina and Ron Law.

Moore split the 1970 season between the Indians and the White Sox. Although a starter for the Tribe, he was mostly a reliever after his June trade to Chicago.

Following the 1970 season, he was traded to the Yankees for outfielder Bill Robinson, but never made it back to the majors.

 He played for the Pirates’ AAA team from 1971-73 before retiring.

Saturday, May 25, 2019

Born on the Same Day - 3/24/1937

Another installment in my "Born on the Same Day" series, featuring players who were born on the same day (!) and year. 

A few days ago, I just happened to find 4 other players who shared (2) common birthdays (Dick Egan/Bob Tillman, and Doug Clemens/Julio Gotay).

This is actually the 23rd post in the series, but since it comes chronologically after Jerry Adair and Roland Sheldon, I'm going to call it post #8.5: Dick Egan and Bob Tillman - both born on 3/24/1937.

Dick Egan was a relief pitcher who played for the Tigers in 1963 and 1964. After a season in the minors, he appeared in 10 games for the Angels early in the 1966 season, before wrapping up his career with 20 games for the Dodgers in 1967.

Bob Tillman played from 1962-1970. He was mostly a backup catcher, except for 1964-65 when he was the Red Sox' regular backstop. After 5 1/2 seasons with Boston. he made a brief stop in the Bronx before finishing up with 3 seasons in Atlanta.