Sunday, September 30, 2012

Woody Fryman (#221)

Woody Fryman was the left-handed pitcher selected by Topps for their all-rookie team in 1966.

Fryman was signed by the Pirates in 1965, and after only 1 season in the minors, he made the Pirates out of spring training in 1966, and compiled a 12-9 record in his rookie season. He slumped to 3-8 in his sophomore season, and was traded to the Phillies (with 3 minor-league prospects) for veteran pitcher Jim Bunning.

Woody spent 4 1/2 seasons with the Phillies, and was the team's only all-star in 1968. Early on, he was strictly a starting pitcher, but he made a number of relief appearances for them from 1970-72.

Fryman was shipped off to the Tigers in August 1972, and helped the Tigers reach the postseason. He was in Detroit's rotation through the end of the 1974 season, then after 2 seasons in Montreal, he spent a season with the Reds and a half season with the Cubs, before being traded back to the Expos in June of 1978.

After finishing the season in the Expos' starting rotation, Fryman moved to the bullpen at the start of the 1979 season, and was strictly a reliever for the remainder of his career (and was the team's #1 reliever in 1980 and 1981). Woody spent most of the 1983 season on the disabled list (appearing in only 6 games), and was released following the season.

Fryman passed away on 2/4/2011 at age 70 in his hometown of Ewing, KY.

Also see his 1968 card.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Spring Break at Vero Beach, FL

While uploading images for all the 1967 Dodgers to Zistle today, I noticed there seemed to be a lot of spring training photos. (The cards for Phil Regan and Claude Osteen almost seem to be the same photo!)

Whether these photos were taken in spring training 1966 or 1967, the Dodgers were fresh off a championship season.

They seem to be enjoying the championship glow, whether pitching:


or just standing around doing nuttin:

 Ahhhh Spring. Night Owl, you shoulda been there...

Monday, September 10, 2012

Jim Nash (#90)

Starting a series on all the Topps 1966 all-star rookies...

Jim Nash made his major-league debut with the Kansas City Athletics on July 3, 1966. In just half a season, he compiled a 12-1 record with a 2.06 ERA, and finished 2nd in the AL Rookie of the Year voting to White Sox' outfielder Tommie Agee. Just 6 seasons later, his career would be over.

Nash was signed by Kansas City in 1963, and collected 14 wins in each of his 2 full minor-league seasons ('64,'65). After fashioning a 7-4 record in 13 starts in 1966, he was called up to the Athletics in early July.

Nash joined the all-righthanded starting rotation that included full-timers Lew Krausse (14-9) and Catfish Hunter (9-11), along with John Odom (5-5) and Chuck Dobson (4-6). At age 23, Krausse was the senior statesman of the group.

Jim won 12 games again in 1967, but lost 17 games. The other Jim (Hunter) also lost 17, but they were the top 2 starters on a bad team, with Odom and Dobson again rounding out the rotation. Last year's ace Krausse spent half the season in the bullpen.

Two .500 seasons followed (13-13, 8-8), but by then team management had seen enough. Nash was traded to the Braves after the 1969 season for outfielder Felipe Alou.

He had a bounce-back year in Atlanta's starting rotation in 1970 (13-9 in 33 starts), but slipped in 1971, was relegated to the bullpen by mid-July, and finished with a 9-7 in 32 games (19 starts).

After 11 appearances, the Braves traded Nash and his 5.46 ERA to the Phillies in mid-June 1972. He started 8 games for the Phillies (0-8, 6.27 ERA), and was part of the horrendous, non-Steve Carlton portion of the Phillies' pitching staff that season. As such, he was released the following March.

Nash wrapped up his pro career with the Athletics' double-A team in 1973.