Saturday, September 28, 2013

#779 Tony Cloninger

Of all teams of the 1972 set, I believe the Cardinals had the most veterans playing out their last year hoping to catch on before getting their outright release…other Cardinal wantabes for 1972 included ex NL stars, Don Clendenon, Jim Maloney, Art Shamsky, and long time Houston reserve, Marty Martinez…Prime of career was spent the Braves organization....Most famous moment was two grand slams in one game...All but Maloney appeared for the Cards in 1972… but it was the end of the line for Tony after 1972…1970 card showed his pitching stats in hitter format an error that was never corrected…had one his better ERA as part of the big Red Machine of 1970 but only garnered nine wins…He like his team had considerable drop in production in 1971.     

Saturday, September 21, 2013

#780 Dick Green

A last name fitting of a career long member of the A’s the only MLB team that uses  green as a team color…An early entrant to the A’s  youth movement that bloomed into 3 consecutive world championships; Jackson, Hunter, Bando,  Rudi… Green never achieved the status of his peers plagued by  inconsistent batting and injuries, twice he failed to hit over .200…good when healthy but not great…missed out on most of Oakland’s first regular season championship run in 1972, where he had only 42 ABs in regular season.....opposed to the year's post season were he had 28 gathering 7 hits…came from a time when even journeymen players stuck with one franchise....long before free agency…Inductee to the South Dakota athletic hall of fame

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

#781 Jim McAndrew

Country boy in the big apple…from Lost Nation, IA an incredibly small town… a pitcher who spent the bulk of his career with the Mets…an off/on pitcher who never appeared in the Mets two post season appearances during his career…had a personal best on eleven wins in 1972…Mostly a starter but relegated to middle relief in later on…Career plauged with injuries and overshadowed by Seaver, Ryan, Gentry, McGraw, and Koosman…Best years never coincided with Mets making the post season…Had very strong WHIP in 1970 and 1972 his best seasons…Finished career with Padres… Son Jamie McAndrew pitched for Milwaukee in the mid 90’s....Pitched for U of Iowa and is #4 in mlb wins and ERA for the Hawkeyes

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

#782 Larry Stahl

Bummer of a name is you are an offensive player, maybe not so bad if are a relief pitcher… Headline:  Rally Stalled by Stahl….bit of a hard luck career finding employment mostly with perennially last place team, the mid 60’s KC A’s,  later 60’s NY Mets,  and the expansion Padres (of course the guy had to leave a franchise that would win the World Series the next year)…Had most games with San Diego and arguably his best season in 1971…Hit a tab over .250 when in platoon situations as he did in 1971 or in 1966 with KCA…Eventually found a winner in his final season with the Reds....That year he went 2-4 in NCLS in a exclusive pinch hit role... Baby faced which belies the  fact he had played professionally for 10 years by the time of this photo…Claim to fame was hitting the longest home run in KC A’s history (it appears to be still the longest hr in Kansas City MLB history)...according to his 1969 and 1970 cards the ball traveled 503 feet....Background is Candlestick Park, where a large number of photos were taken of the home Giants, and visiting Padres, Astros, Phillies, and various IN ACTION shots. 

Monday, September 2, 2013

#783 Les Cain

Les Cain…  

Put in double digit wins in his first two big league seasons but was plagued with arm troubles all through his career…Had an excellent debut in ’70 with 12 wins, making up somewhat  for the loss of Denny McClain by suspension….Especially surprising coming on the heels  of a hideous 1969 campain at AAA Toledo…Now for the strange parts…Wikipedia indicates the following…hit the last HR by a Detroit pitcher before the start of the DH…contended he was forced to pitch by Detroit manager Billy Martin while he had a sore arm...Cain later claimed that it did permanent damage to his arm and he sued the Tigers. In a landmark decision, the Michigan Bureau of Workman's Compensation ordered the Tigers to pay Cain $111 a month for the rest of his life. A lump sum payment was later agreed upon. …sneaked in a win during the Tiger's  World Championship season in 1968...was only 20 at the time.... finished by 0-3 in 72 but had a respectable 3.80 ERA........In a four-season career went 23-19.  

The photo appears to be taken during Spring all likelihood the Tigers Lakeland facility which still used to this day.