The 1970’s, A To Z: Jerry Royster to Dick Ruthven

Recap: I’m going through all of the notable and somewhat notable players and managers of the 1970’s and I’m basically making like it’s an all-encompassing 1970’s throwback baseball card set. For the “card front”, I’m sharing my favorite 1970’s card of that guy. I’m also including a card back’s worth of information and thoughts about him and his cardboard.


JERRY ROYSTER

1977 Topps #549

Played 1973-1988
1970’s Teams: Dodgers, Braves

1970’s Highlights:
A prospect in the Dodgers system who was blocked at the Major League level, Royster was traded to Atlanta in a deal that also involved Jim Wynn and Dusty Baker; Was the 3rd baseman on the 1976 Topps All-Star Rookie team

Career Highlights:
Managed the Lotte GIants of the Korea Baseball Organization in 2008, making him the first foreign manager of a KBO team; Was a coach with the Rockies, Brewers and Dodgers

Fun Stuff:
His cousin is former Major League OF/DH Greg Vaughn; His leaping catch at Fulton County Stadium was featured in the credits of “This Week In Baseball”


JOE RUDI

1974 Topps #264

Played 1967 – 1982
1970’s Teams: A’s, Angels

1970’s Highlights:
Was an All-Star in 1972, 1974 and 1975, with a starting job in 1975; Finished 2nd in MVP voting in 1972 (1 first place vote) and 1974 (5 first place votes); Won three World Championships with the A’s; Won a division title with the 1979 Angels; Lead the league in hits and Triples in 1972; Lead the league in doubles in 1974; Won Gold Gloves from 1974 to 1976; In 1976 his contract was sold to the Red Sox for $1 million before commissioner Bowie Kuhn nixed the deal as not being in the best interests of baseball

Card Stuff:
Appears in every flagship Topps set of the 1970s; His 1973 Topps card famously features 3 A’s players, none of whom are Joe Rudi


BILL RUSSELL

1975 Topps #23

Played 1969 – 1986
1970’s Teams: Dodgers

1970’s Highlights:
An All-Star in 1973 and 1976; Originally an outfielder, he didn’t become a shortstop until his 4th Major League season; Part of the Garvey-Lopes-Russell-Cey Dodgers infield which played together from June 1973 to the end of the 1981 season

Career Highlights:
Russell’s 2,181 games is the most of any Los Angeles Dodger; Also holds the Dodgers career record with 106 intentional bases-on-balls; An All-Star in 1980; Has a career .294 postseason batting average; Replaced Tommy Lasorda as Dodgers manager in 1996 and took the team to 2nd place finishes that year and the next before being fired during the 1998 season

Card Stuff:
Appears in every flagship Topps set of the 1970s;  Did not appear in the 1976 SSPC set after missing nearly half of the previous season due to injuries


DICK RUTHVEN

1975 Topps #267

Played 1973 -1986
1970’s Teams: Phillies, Braves

1970’s Highlights:
Was an All-American in 1972 and made his Major League debut on April 17, 1973 without having played in the minors; Was an All-Star in 1976, the same season he lead the league with 17 losses (the Braves were 70-92 that season)

Career Highlights:
Won a World Series with the 1980 Phillies and won a career-high 17 games during that season

Fun Stuff:
Appeared on Family Feud in 1980 as five Phillies took on five players from their World Series opponent KC Royals; His twin sister married fellow Major-Leaguer Tommy Hutton; Was a member of the Chicago White Sox for 2 days in December, 1975 when he was dealt by the Phillies in a trade involving Jim Kaat, and then flipped to the Braves in a trade for Ralph Garr

Card Stuff:
Although many of the players from his two December 1975 trades were featured in the 1976 Topps Traded set, Ruthven was left out


Joe Rudi’s catch in the 1972 World Series

1 thought on “The 1970’s, A To Z: Jerry Royster to Dick Ruthven

  1. I still remember the spectacular catch Joe Rudi made in the 72 world series versus the Reds, one of the greatest plays since Willie Mays catch back in the 50’s, before I was born. Bill Russell was steady piece in the Dodger infield, when teams like Pirates & Reds had the same players every year at there positions. Dick Ruthven was a pretty good batter for a pitcher when he played.

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