The 1970’s, A To Z: Cookie Rojas to Pete Rose

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.


COOKIE ROJAS

1971 Topps #118

Played 1962 – 1977
1970’s Teams: Cardinals, Royals

1970’s Highlights:
All-Star from 1971 to 1974; batted .333 with 2 runs and an RBI in the 1977 ALCS; Was involved in turning a triple play vs. the Rangers, 8/13/72

Career Highlights:
Was inducted in to the Kansas City Royals Hall of Fame, 1987; Got his first Major League hit off of Sandy Koufax in 1962

Fun Stuff:
Pitched a scoreless inning of relief, including getting Willie Mays to pop out, in the 9th inning of the 2nd game of a doubleheader, where the Phillies were down by 9 runs; Played every position at some point in his career

The Game On The Featured Card:
Because Cookie Rojas only played half of the 1970 season with the Royals and because we can see that it’s a game at Yankee Stadium with a partial score on the scoreboard in the background, it’s easy to figure out that this game was played on Sunday, August 16, 1970. At the time, #9 for the Yankees was outfielder Ron Woods and the only time he got on base in that game was in the bottom of the 6th. Woods singled off of Ken Wright to lead off the inning, but Gene Michael hit into a 6-4-3 double-play, which must be what we’re seeing here. Incidentally, the losing pitcher in that game was Jim Rooker, who is also featured in this post.


PHIL ROOF

1976 Topps #424

Played 1961 – 1977
1970’s Teams: Brewers, Twins, White Sox, Blue Jays

1970’s Highlights:
Was the first-ever Blue Jay, having been acquired from the White Sox in October 1976, a couple of months before the expansion draft

Career Highlights:
Over his career he played for 8 teams and was involved in 6 trades; Managed in the minor leagues and coached in the Majors with the Padres, Mariners and Cubs

PHANTOM SEATTLE PILOT!
Although Phil is shown as a Pilot on his 1970 Topps card, he was acquired from the A’s in January 1970 and the Pilots became the Milwaukee Brewers before the start of the 1970 season, meaning that Phil Roof never played a regular season game for the Pilots

More Card Stuff:
This 1977 O-Pee-Chee card has an updated photo of him with the Blue Jays in spring training (a card I would share with you here but I don’t have it yet)

Still More Card Stuff:
Appeared on multi-player “Rookie Stars” cards in 1963, 1964 and 1965 Topps… The 1964 card is also Phil Niekro’s rookie card;  A 1982 Donruss card of Gene Roof – Phil’s younger brother – was mistakenly labeled as Phil Roof on the font


JIM ROOKER

I couldn’t decide on a ‘best’ Jim Rooker card so I instead decided to feature all of his similar follow-though cards

Played 1968 – 1980
1970’s Teams: Royals, Pirates

1970’s Highlights:
Had six seasons with double-digit wins and three with 200+ innings pitched; Pitched 8.2 effective innings over two games of the 1979 World Series, allowing 5 hits, 1 earned run and striking out 4 batters

Career Highlights:
Won 103 games over 13 seasons; Was an outfielder in the minors before being converted to pitching and had a .201 batting average over his Major League career; Was a Pirates broadcaster from 1981 to 1993

Walking home from Philadelphia:
Rooker was broadcasting for the Pirates in a 1989 game where the Bucs had a 10-0 lead in the 1st inning, and proclaimed that he would walk home if the Pirates lost the game. The Phils ended up winning 15-11, and during the following offseason he made good on his ‘promise’ and walked from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh to raise money for a children’s hospital

Fun Stuff:
Rooker was a NY Yankee for two weeks — he was acquired on September 30 1968 from the Tigers as an earlier trade’s player-to-be-named-later, and then selected by the Royals in the expansion draft held on October 15th

Card Stuff:
Appears in every 1970s Topps flagship set *except* for 1973


PETE ROSE

1976 Topps #240

Played 1963 – 1986
Managed 1984 – 1989
1970’s Teams: Reds, Phillies

1970’s Highlights:
Was named the National League MVP in 1973 in a season where he batted .338 and lead the league in average and with 230 hits (a Cincinnati Reds team record); Was an starter for the NL all-star team in 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976 and 1978; Reached 3,000 hits on 5/5/78; Was the MVP of the 1975 World Series (.370/.485/.481 with a double, a triple, 3 runs and 2 RBI); Had a National League record 44-game hitting streak in 1978; started a streak of 745 consecutive games at the end of the 1978 season

Career Highlights:
Baseball’s all-time leader with 4,256 hits and the 1963 NL Rookie of the Year, he’d easily have been a HOFer had he not been banned from baseball; Holds Reds career marks with 2,722 games, 10,934 AB, 1,741 runs, 3,358 hits, 601 doubles and 1,210 walks; Hold the Reds single-season record with 230 hits in 1973; Was a 17-time All-Star, a 2-time Gold Glove winner and a 3-time batting champion

Fun Stuff:
Was the victim of Bob Gibson’s final strikeout, 8/29/75

Card Stuff:
Was included in every flagship Topps set of the 1970s; His 1979 Burger King Phillies card was one of that year’s most sought-after oddball cards

The 1970’s, A To Z: Brooks Robinson to Steve Rogers

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.


BROOKS ROBINSON

1975 Topps #50

1955 – 1977
1970’s Teams: Orioles

1970’s Highlights:
Was the MVP of the 1970 World Series when he hit .429 and 2 homers and 6 RBI; Was the starting American League 3rd baseman in the 1971 – 1974 All-Star Games

Career Highlights:
Was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1983; Was an 18 consecutive All-Star games from 1960 to 1974; Won 16 consecutive Gold Gloves at 3rd base from 1960 to 1975 (the streak was broken by another player in this post); In 1964 Brooks was named the league MVP after leading the AL 118 RBI and winning a Gold Glove; Batted .303 with 17 runs and 22 RBI over 39 career postseason games; Was the MVP of the 1966 All-Star Game; Won 4 pennants and 2 World Series over his career

Fun Stuff:
As you can see on the 1975 card above, Brooks sawed off much of the bill on his batting helmet, something that greatly bothered me as a kid… and still bugs me today


FRANK ROBINSON

1976 SSPC #525

Played 1956 – 1976
Managed 1975 – 2006
1970’s Teams: Orioles, Dodgers, Angels, Indians

1970’s Highlights:
was the MVP of the 1971 All-Star Game; Reached 500 homers on 9/13/71; Became the first African-American manager in the Majors in 1975, while still active as a player; Starting American League right fielder in 1970 and 1971

Career Highlights:
A member of the Baseball Hall of Fame, and also the Reds HOF, the Orioles HOF, the Indians HOF and the Expos HOF; A 12-time All-Star; In 1956 when he was 20 years old, he hit 38 home runs and was the National League Rookie of the Year; Was the 1961 NL MVP; Was traded to the Orioles for the 1966 season and responded by winning the Triple Crown, winning the AL MVP award (becoming the first to win MVP in both leagues) and the World Series MVP; Holds Reds career mark with a .554 slugging percentage; Tied with Pete Rose for Reds single-season mark of 51 doubles in 1962; Managed the GIants, Orioles and Expos/Nationals; Was the MLB Vice President of On-Field Operations and later the Executive Vice President of Player Development; Was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by George W. Bush in 2005

Fun Stuff:
Was the only player to hit a ball completely out of Baltimore’s Memorial Stadium; Appeared in episodes of The Cosby Show, Arli$$ and Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper


AURELIO RODRIGUEZ

1974 Topps #72

Played 1967 – 1983
1970’s Teams: Angels, Senators, Tigers

1970’s Highlights:
Won a Gold Glove at 3rd base in 1976, making him the first 3rd baseman other than Brooks Robinson to win that award since 1959 (when it was Frank Malzone); Set a record in 1978 for the fewest errors (4) by a third baseman over a full season; His 31 doubles in 1970 was a Senators/Rangers record, but would be broken in 1974 by Jeff Burroughs (33) and is currently tied for 81st

Career Highlights:
Batted .417 (5 for 12) with the Yankees in the 1981 World Series

Card Stuff:
His 1969 rookie card famously shows an Angels batboy rather than Rodriguez; Appears in every flagship Topps set of the 1970s; Despite playing in 141 games for the Padres and Yankees in 1980, he did not appear in 1981 Donruss


ELLIE RODRIGUEZ

1976 Topps #512

Played 1968 – 1976
1970’s Teams: Royals, Brewers, Angels, Dodgers

1970’s Highlights:
Was an All-Star in 1972; Caught a Nolan Ryan no-hitter on 6/1/75; Was part of a Brewers triple play turned against the Red Sox, 4/28/71

Career Highlights:
Broke into the Majors with the Yankees in 1968 and was selected by the Royals in the 1968 expansion draft; Was the Royals first All-Star (1969)

Card Stuff:
Appeared in 1975 Hostess with the same airbrushed portrait that appeared in 1974 Topps; Is in 1977 Topps as a Dodger, but he got released 5/2/77 and didn’t appear in the Majors after 1976


STEVE ROGERS

1976 SSPC #349

Played 1973 – 1985
1970’s Teams: Expos

1970’s Highlights:
Was a 1973 Topps All-Star Rookie and finished 2nd to Gary Matthews in 1973 NL ROY voting; Was the Expos opening day starter from 1976 to 1979; Was named to the 1971 College World Series All-Tournament team; Was an All-Star in 1974, 1978 and 1979; Lead the NL with 5 shutouts in 1979; Struck out a career-high 206 batters in 1977 (3rd behind Phil Niekro and J.R. Richard)

Career Highlights:
Shares the Expos/Nationals single-season record with 5 shutouts in 1979 and 1983; Was inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame in 2005; Holds Expos/Nats records with 158 wins, 152 losses, 129 complete games, 37 shutouts and 2,837.2 innings pitched; Was also an All-Star in 1982 and 1983; Lead the NL with a 2.40 ERA in 1982; Despite twice leading the league in losses early in his career, he ended up with a 158-152 career record; was the starting pitcher in the 1982 All-Star Game, which was played in Montreal

Fun Stuff:
Gave up Pete Rose’s 3000th hit in 1978

Card Stuff:
His 1977 O-Pee-Chee card has a different photo than was used in 1977 Topps


1970s: A-Z Special Edition – Dueling Dave Roberts

There have been four Major Leaguers named Dave Roberts.  One is the current manager of the Dodgers who played in the Majors from 1999 to 2008.  The first Dave Roberts had three different Major League stints in the 1960s and appeared in 91 career games.

And then there’s the other two Dave Roberts, the guys whose careers overlapped for most of the 1970s and early 1980s.  Since my alphabetical romp through the 1970s came up on the two Dave Roberts, I thought it would be fun to do a side-by-side comparison of the overlapping cards of these two Dave Roberts.

For the rest of this post, I’m going to refer to LHP David Arthur Roberts as “Pitcher Dave” and IF/C David Wayne Roberts – who was drafted 1st overall in 1972 – as “Draft Pick Dave”.

Pitcher Dave was in the Phillies and Pirates organizations before being selected by the Padres with the 39th pick in the 1968 expansion draft. He made his Major League debut with the 1969 Padres.

In 1971 Pitcher Dave’s 2.10 ERA was second only to Tom Seaver among National League pitchers, and still stands as a team record. It also got him on a 1972 Topps League Leader card, making him the first Padre to appear on such a card. Pitcher Dave’s 14-17 record was pretty impressive considering that the ’71 Padres lost 100 games. He also set Padres records for innings pitched (269.2, broken by Randy Jones 4 years later) and complete games (14, once again broken by Jones in 1975).

Pitcher Dave also had two pitchers duels with Seaver in August of 1971. In the first game, on August 11, Seaver threw 10 innings while striking out 14 and giving up only 1 hit, but ended up with a no-decision as the Padres won 1-0 in 12 innings. Pitcher Dave pitched a 12 inning complete game and got the win. In the second game, on August 21, the game was tied at 1-1 going into the bottom of the 9th; Pitcher Dave got the first two batters out before giving up a walk-off home run to Cleon Jones.

After the 1971 season, Pitcher Dave was traded to Houston and in 1972 he went 12-7, 4.50 for the 3rd place Astros.

Pitcher Dave would appear in every flagship Topps set of the 1970s.

Draft Pick Dave was the 1st overall selection in the 1972 draft, went straight from the University of Oregon to the woeful Padres and was named the 3rd baseman on the 1972 Topps All-Star Rookie team (but got no votes for NL Rookie of the Year).

And with that, let’s go to their first year of cardboard overlap…

1973
Pitcher Dave was the Astros’ opening day starter, won a career-high 17 games and set a still-standing team record with 6 shutouts.

Draft Pick Dave hit .286 with 21 homers and 64 RBIs. On September 29th he hit the first inside-the-park homer in Padres history, a solo home run off of the Dodgers’ Geoff Zahn

1974

Pitcher Dave was the Astros opening day starter again and ended up going 10-12, 3.40

Draft Pick Dave struggled, hitting .167 with 5 homers and 18 RBIs. His 1974 Topps card was one of the ones which have a “Washington Nat’l Lea.” version.

Both Daves also appeared in the 1974 Topps Stamps set.

1975

Both Daves had rough years.  Pitcher Dave went 8-14 and his ERA rose to 4.27.

Draft Pick Dave’s struggles at the plate in 1974 landed him in AAA for much of 1975 and played just 33 games for the Padres.

1976
A 7-player December 1975 trade sent Pitcher Dave to the Tigers, where he would win 16 games and tally up 18 complete games. He would be the last pitcher Hank Aaron would face, and Aaron singled to drive Charlie Moore in from 3rd, after which he came out of the game when Jim Gantner came in as a pinch runner.

The Padres decided to turn Draft Pick Dave into a catcher and he spent the entire 1976 season with the AAA Hawaii Islanders and manager Roy Hartsfield learning his new position.

1977

Pitcher Dave was the Tiger’s opening day starter but was purchased by the Cubs just before the trade deadline. He also appeared on a Hostess card for the first and only time.

Draft Pick Dave, as a player familiar to Toronto’s first manager Roy Hartsfield, was included among the initial group of Blue Jays when his contract was purchased in October, 1976.  He was airbrushed into a Blue Jays cap in 1977 Topps… But in February 1977 he was traded back to the Padres, so 1977 O-Pee-Chee shows him with the Padres in an untouched photo.

Nerdy font note:  Note that Pitcher Dave’s name is done in a wider version of the same font that Draft Pick Dave’s name is.

1978

Pitcher Dave matched his career high by hitting 2 home runs.  Despite having pitched in 17 games for the Cubs in 1977, he appears here in an airbrushed Cubs cap

Draft Pick Dave did not appear in 1978 Topps, despite having played 82 games with the Padres in 1977. At this point he’s no longer considered a starter and is fully a utility player.

1979

Pitcher Dave signed as a free agent with the Giants in February, 1979… Too late to be shown with San Francisco on a Topps card.  That June he was sent to the Pirates in a 6-player deal that also had Bill Madlock going to Pittsburgh.  He made an appearance in the 1979 NLCS, but did not pitch in the World Series

Draft Pick Dave was traded to Texas in December 1978, so his 1979 Topps card was also out of date by the time packs hit the stores.

1980

Pitcher Dave was sold to the Mariners in April, 1980

1981

Pitcher Dave was a free agent after the 1980 season, signed with the Mets, went 0-3 with a 9.39 ERA, was released in May and signed with the Giants in June… but he would not pitch in the Majors again.

Draft Pick Dave was a free agent after the 1980 season and he signed with the Astros (and appeared in 1981 Topps Traded)

 

The 1970’s, A To Z: Jim Rice to Mickey Rivers

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.


JIM RICE

1979 Topps #400

Played 1974 – 1989
1970’s Teams: Red Sox

1970’s Highlights:
Was the AL MVP in 1978 in a season where he lead the league with 213 hits, 46 homers, 139 RBI, 15 triples and a .600 slugging percentage… he was also 2nd in the league with 121 runs and 3rd in batting with a .315 average; Was named to the 1975 Topps All-Star Rookie team; Was a starting outfielder in both the 1978 and 1979 All-Star games; With AAA Pawtucket in 1974 he hit for a triple crown, was named the International League Rookie of the year and MVP, and was named the Minor League Player of the Year; Lead the AL with 39 homers ad a .593 slugging percentage in 1977; In 1975, finished a distant second in Rookie of the Year voting to teammate and league MVP Fred Lynn

Career Highlights:
Was inducted into the Baseball HOF in 2009; Lead the league with 39 homers in 1983; Was named to 8 All-Star teams and was Top Five in MVP voting six times; Won the Silver Slugger Award in 1983 and 1984


J.R. RICHARD

1976 Hostess #110

Played 1971 – 1980
1970’s Teams: Astros

1970’s Highlights:
Lead the league with 303 strikeouts in 1978 and 313 in 1979 and was the first right-handed National League pitcher to strike out 300+ batters; In 1979 he lead the NL with a 2.71 ERA; Won 20 games in 1976; Tied a Major League record by striking out 15 batters in his first game; Was the Astros’ opening day starter from 1976 to 1979; Got first place votes in 1978 and 1979 Cy Young Award voting but finished 4th and 3rd, respectively

Career Highlights:
Made his only All-Star team in 1980 and shortly after the All-Star game he suffered a stroke which ended his career; Was the 2nd overall draft pick (after Jeff Burroughs) in 1969

Fun Stuff:
Appeared in the movie “The Bad News Bears in Breaking Training”


GENE RICHARDS

1978 Topps #292

Played 1977 – 1984
1970’s Teams: Padres

1970’s Highlights:
Set a record in 1977 by stealing 56 bases as a rookie; Got 4 votes and finished 3rd in 1977 NL Rookie of the Year voting behind Andre Dawson (10 votes) and Steve Henderson (9 votes); Was involved in turning a triple play vs. the Braves, 4/11/78

Career Highlights:
Lead the league with 12 triples in 1981; Hit .290 for his career and batted over .300 twice

Fun Stuff:
Was the only Padres player other than Tony Gwynn to wear #19 (coach Whitey Wietelmann wore it for most of the 1970s)


MICKEY RIVERS

1976 Topps #85

Played 1970 – 1984
1970’s Teams: Angels, Yankees, Rangers

1970’s Highlights:
Lead the league with 70 stolen bases in 1975, still an Angels team record; lead the league in triples in 1974 (11) and 1975 (13); In 1976 he hit .312, stole 43 bases and batted in 67 runs, was an All-Star and got a first-place vote in 1976 AL MVP voting, but finished 3rd behind teammate Thurman Munson; Batted .308 in the postseason; Got the first hit in the renovated Yankee Stadium, 4/15/76

Career Highlights:

In 1980 he batted .333 and got career highs with 210 hits, 32 doubles and 96 runs scored, plus got some consideration for AL MVP

Fun Stuff:
His nickname is “Mick The Quick”

Card Stuff:
His 1972 and 1973 Topps cards use the same photo (1972 is cropped tighter)

The 1970’s, A To Z: Rick Reuschel to Rick Rhoden

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.


RICK REUSCHEL

1974 Topps #136

Played 1972 – 1991
1970’s Teams: Cubs

1970’s Highlights:
In 1977 he won 20 games and got a first-place vote in NL Cy Young voting, but finished a distant 3rd behind winner Steve Carlton; Was the Cubs’ opening day starter in 1978 and 1979; Baseball Digest named him to their All-Star Rookie team in 1972

Career Highlights:
Pitched 19 seasons and won 214 career games; Was a three-time All-Star and won two Gold Gloves; was named the NL Comeback Player of the Year in 1985; Lead the league in shutouts and complete games in 1987; Won 19 games and lead the league with 36 starts as a 39-year-old in 1988

Fun Stuff:
His older brother Paul also pitched for the Cubs and Indians, and they combined to pitch a shutout on August 21, 1975

Card Stuff:
Appeared in all five 1970s Hostess sets; Shared a 1977 Topps “Big League Brothers” card with Paul


JERRY REUSS

1976 Topps #60

Played 1969 – 1990
1970’s Teams: Cardinals, Astros, Pirates, Dodgers

1970’s Highlights:
Was the starting pitcher in the 1975 All-Star Game and won 18 games that season; Was the Pirates’ opening day starter in 1974 and 1977; Took a no-hitter through 8 innings of a 1972 game against the Phillies, broken up when Larry Bowa lead off the 9th with a double (but Reuss got the next three batters out for a one-hitter)

Career Highlights:
In 1980 while with the Dodgers he lead the league in shutouts, no-hit the Giants, made the All-Star team, finished 2nd to Steve Carlton (and got a first place vote) in NL Cy Young voting and was named the NL Comeback Player of the Year; Won 220 career games without ever winning 20 in a season (his personal best was 18, which he did three times)

Fun Stuff:
Gave up Dave Winfield’s first career hit (6/9/73); As part of the “Big Blue Wrecking Crew” (with Rick Monday, Jay Johnston and Steve Yeager) recorded a version of “We Are The Champions” after the 1981 World Series

Card Stuff:
Makes a ‘cameo appearance’ on Steve Ontiveros’ 1975 Topps card


DAVE REVERING

1979 Topps #224

Played 1978 – 1982
1970’s Teams: A’s

1970’s Highlights:
Blocked at first base with the Reds, he spent four full seasons with AAA Indianapolis before being traded to Oakland and stepping into the A’s starting job; Was named to the 1978 Topps All-Star Rookie team; In 1979 he had a career year, hitting .288 with 19 HR, 77 RBI and 63 runs

Fun Stuff:
During the 1977 seasons he was traded to the A’s along with $1M for Vida Blue, but that deal was voided by Commissioner Bowie Kuhn

Card Stuff:
Appears with the Reds on a 1978 “Rookie 1st Baseman” cards, but was traded to Oakland before breaking into the Majors


CRAIG REYNOLDS

1976 SSPC #582

Played 1975 – 1989
1970’s Teams: Pirates, Mariners, Astros

1970’s Highlights:
An All-Star in 1978 and 1979; In December 1976 he was sent to the Mariners as part of a package for Grant Jackson, who had been selected from the Yankees in the expansion draft a month earlier;  On April 22, 1977, Reynolds started what would be the first triple play in Mariners history when he fielded a grounder, stepped on 2nd to force Amos Otis, threw to first to get batter Darrell Porter, and 1st baseman Dan Meyer threw home to catcher Skip Jutze to get John Mayberry trying to score;  Set a still-standing Astros team record with 34 sacrifices in 1979

Fun Stuff:
Pitched an inning in each of two different games in 1986 and 1989 and finished with a 27.00 career ERA

Card Stuff:
The featured SSPC card is the only ‘solo’ card which shows Reynolds with the Pirates


RICK RHODEN

1976 SSPC #72

Played 1974 – 1989
1970’s Teams: Dodgers, Pirates

1970’s Highlights:
Was an All-Star in 1976; Lead the NL with a .800 winning percentage (12-3) in 1976; traded by the Dodgers to the Pirates for Jerry Reuss, featured above; Was the Dodgers’ 1st round pick (20th overall) in 1971

Career Highlights:
One of the best hitting pitchers of the time, he had a .238 career average, 9 homers and 75 RBI and won three Silver Slugger awards; Was also an All-Star in 1986

Fun Stuff:
Played on the senior golf tour with three top-10 finishes, earning over a million dollars

Card Stuff:
Appeared in 1981 Topps and 1981 Fleer but not 1981 Donruss

The 1970’s, A To Z: Rick Reed to Merv Rettenmund

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.


RON REED

1973 Topps #72

Played 1966 – 1984
1970’s Teams: Braves, Cardinals, Phillies

1970’s Highlights:
Was a starter with the Braves and Cardinals, but switched to the bullpen with the Phillies and had several seasons of double-digit saves; In 1975 he had the lowest ratio of home runs to innings pitched (0.2) of any National League pitcher – that’s 5 home runs in 250.1 innings pitched

Career Highlights:
Was an All-Star in 1968 and retired the two batters he faced; Won 18 games in 1969; Pitched two scoreless innings in the 1980 World Series; Was inducted in the Indiana Baseball Hall of Fame

Fun Stuff:
Played two seasons for the NBA’s Detroit Pistons and was selected by the Seattle SuperSonics in the NBA expansion draft (although he never played for them)

Card Stuff:
Appears in every flagship Topps set of the 1970s; I’m going to guess that the catcher on the 1973 card above is Paul Casanova, the only 1972 Braves catcher to wear a number that ends with 5 (Casanova wore #15)


KEN REITZ

1974 Topps #372

Played 1972 – 1982
1970’s Teams: Cardinals, Giants

1970’s Highlights:
Won a Gold Glove in 1975; Was traded by the Cardinals to his hometown Giants during the 1975 winter meetings and was traded back to the Cards a year later; Went 4-for-10 and hit a 2-run homer to tie the game in the top of the 9th in what would be a Cards 25-inning 4-3 Cardinals win over Mets 9/11/74 (Longest game of the 1970’s, by innings played)

Career Highlights:
Was an All-Star in 1980; Was known as an excellent fielder but a slow runner

Fun Stuff:
His nickname was “Zamboni”


JERRY REMY

1976 Topps #229

Played 1975 – 1984
1970’s Teams: Angels, Red Sox

1970’s Highlights:
Was an All-Star in 1978, his first with his hometown Red Sox; Was named the 2nd baseman on the 1975 Topps All-Star Rookie Team; Had four seasons of 30+ stolen bases

Career Highlights:
Was a broadcaster with the Red Sox for 33 years; Was inducted into the Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame in 2007


STEVE RENKO

1972 Topps #308

Played 1969 – 1983
1970’s Teams: Expos, Cubs, White Sox, A’s, Red Sox

1970’s Highlights:
While pitching for the Red Sox on 7/13/79 he had a no-hitter broken up by Rickey Henderson with one out in the 9th inning; Also threw a pair of one-hitters in 1971; Was the Expos’ opening day starter in 1974; Had five seasons of double-digit wins; Had four seasons of 200+ innings pitched

Fun Stuff:
Started his career in the Mets organization as a first baseman and outfielder before being converted to pitching; A good hitter for a pitcher, Renko batted 7th in a game on 8/26/73 and went 2-for-3 against the Padres (Pepe Frias and Terry Humphrey batted 8th & 9th); Was a quarterback for the University of Kansas and Gale Sayers was one of his teammates; was drafted by the AFL’s Oakland Raiders

Card Stuff:
Appeared in every Topps flagship set of the 1970s; Appeared in 5 straight Topps sets with 5 different teams – Expos in 1976, Cubs in 1977, White Sox in 1978, A’s in 1979 and Red Sox in 1980


MERV RETTENMUND

1971 Topps #393

Played 1968 – 1980
1970’s Teams: Orioles, Reds, Padres, Angels

1970’s Highlights:
Got some MVP votes in 1971 when he batted .318 with 81 runs and 75 RBI… he also finished third in batting that year; Hit a 3-run homer in Game 1 of the 1971 World Series to give the O’s a lead they wouldn’t give up; Injuries would limit his playing time and he became a valued pinch-hitter; Played in the postseason with the Orioles, Reds and Angels and won the World Series twice (1970 and 1975)

Career Highlights:
Was the International League MVP in 1968

Fun Stuff:
Was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in 1964; Rettenmund and his daughter appeared on the game show “Break The Bank” in 1985

Card Stuff:
Appeared in every Topps flagship set of the 1970s;  His first card was in the 1967 Topps Venezuelan set as a player with La Guaira (Only his name is listed as “Marv”)

The 1970’s, A To Z: Lenny Randle to Claude Raymond

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.


LENNY RANDLE

1978 Topps #544

Played 1971 – 1982
1970’s Teams: Senators, Rangers, Mets, Yankees

1970’s Highlights:
Was the starting 2nd baseman and first batter in the first game in Texas Rangers history; scored the first-ever run by the Rangers in the team’s 2nd game

Career Highlights:
Inducted into the Arizona State University Hall of Fame as both a baseball and football player

Fun Stuff:
Famously tried to blow a ball into foul territory while playing for the Mariners in 1981; Recorded music singles in 1982 and an album in 1983; Was a college teammate of Jim Crawford, Larry Gura, Lerrin LaGrow and Craig Swan


WILLIE RANDOLPH

1979 Topps #250

Played 1975 – 1992
1970’s Teams: Pirates, Yankees

1970’s Highlights:
Was an All-Star as a 21-year-old rookie in 1976, and the starting AL 2nd baseman in the 1977 All-Star Game; Was traded by the Pirates, who had Rennie Stennett at 2nd, to the Yankees as part of a package for Doc Medich

Career Highlights:
Was the Yankees team captain for 3 years; Lead the league with a career-high 119 walks in 1980; Was a six-time All-Star; Won the Silver Slugger award in 1980; Managed the Mets for three and a half seasons

Fun Stuff:
His brother Terry was a defensive back with the Green Bay Packers

Card Stuff:
Has a card in 1976 Topps Traded even though his “regular” card was a multi-player “Rookie Infielders” card; His 1977 Burger King Yankees card is missing the Topps All-Star Rookie Cup


DOUG RAU

1979 Topps #347

Played 1972 – 1981
1970’s Teams: Dodgers

1970’s Highlights:
Won 13+ games for five straight years; Pitched in the postseason 3 different years;
Career; His 2.57 ERA in 1976 was second-best in the NL; Finished his career – all but three career games were during the 1970s – with an 81-60 record and a 3.35 ERA; Took a no-hitter into the 8th inning in 1975; His career was derailed by rotator cuff surgery

Fun Stuff:
Hit his only career triple in his first-ever Major League at-bat

Card Stuff:
Had cards in 1977 and 1979 Kellogg’s


CLAUDE RAYMOND

1971 O-Pee-Chee #202

Played 1959 – 1971
1970’s Teams: Expos

1970’s Highlights:
Had a career-high 23 saves for the Expos in 1970

Career Highlights:
Was an All-Star in 1966; Was the first Canadian and first Québécois to play for the Expos; When he first appeared in Montreal with the visiting Braves, was given a standing ovation; Was a French-language analyst on Expos radio broacasts from 1972 to 2001

Fun Stuff:
As he speaks both French and English and, of course, has a background in baseball, he was one of the public address announcers for baseball at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics

Card Stuff:
His 1971 O-Pee-Chee card (featured above) uses a different photo than was used on his 1971 Topps card

The 1970’s, A To Z: Lou Piniella To Doug Rader

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.


LOU PINIELLA

1974 Topps #390

Played 1964 – 1984
1970’s Teams: Royals, Yankees

1970’s Highlights:
His 1972 season was his only All-Star season, he lead the league with 33 doubles plus set Royals team records for hits (179) and average (.312) — both of these team records were broken by George Brett later in the 1970s;  Was the first DH to get a hit in the World Series (doubled to right in game 1 of the 1976 World Series)

Career Highlights:
Was the 1969 AL Rookie of the Year after he’d been selected in the 1968 expansion draft by the Seattle Pilots and then traded to the Royals at the end of spring training; Got the first hit and first run in Royals history; Was a successful manager with the Yankees, Reds, Mariners, Devil Rays and Cubs, winning the 1990 World Series with the Reds; Was named the AL Manager of the Year in 1995 and 2001 and the NL Manager of the Year in 2008

Fun Stuff:
His cousin is former Major Leaguer Dave Magadan

Card Stuff:
Appeared in every flagship Topps set of the 1970s; Appeared on three “Rookie Stars” combo cards with three different teams (1964 Senators, 1968 Indians and 1969 Pilots) before getting his own solo card in 1970 Topps; His card in the 1977 Burger King Yankees set, rumored to be included at George Steinbrenner’s insistence, is a relatively pricey short print (but the front looks the same as his regular 1977 Topps card)


DARRELL PORTER

1978 Topps #19

Played 1971 – 1987
1970’s Teams: Brewers, Royals

1970’s Highlights:
Starting AL All-Star Catcher in 1979; Also an All-Star in 1974 and 1978; In 1979 he lead the AL with 121 walks and 13 sacrifice flies in 1979, plus drove in 112 runs; Caught Jim Colborn’s no-hitter on 5/14/77

Career Highlights:
Was named the MVP of both the 1982 NLCS and World Series; Was inducted into the Brewers Wall of Honor

Card Stuff:
His 1977 O-Pee-Chee card is updated via a different photo plus airbrushing


BOOG POWELL

1975 Topps #625

Played 1961 – 1977
1970’s Teams: Orioles, Indians Dodgers

1970’s Highlights:
Was voted the AL MVP in 1970 after batting .297 with a .549 slugging % (2nd best in the AL), 35 homers (5th in AL), 114 RBI (3rd in AL) and 82 runs;  Named the 1975 AL Comeback Player of the Year;  The AL’s starting 1st baseman in the 1970 All-Star Game and was also an All-Star in 1971

Career Highlights:
Lead the AL in Slugging % in 1964;  An All-Star in 1968 and 1969; Named to the 1962 Topps All-Star Rookie Team;  Named the 1966 AL Comeback Player of the Year;  Inducted into the Orioles Hall of Fame in 1979

Fun Stuff:
Boog’s BBQ is one of the most popular food stands at Camden Yards


I’m going to skip over Q (apologies to Frank Quilici and Jamie Quirk) and move on to R


DAVE RADER

1973 Topps #121

Played 1971 – 1980
1970’s Teams: Giants, Cardinals, Cubs, Phillies

1970’s Highlights:
Finished 2nd to Jon Matlack in 1972 NL Rookie of the Year voting, but was named the Rookie Player of the Year by the Sporting News (which had a separate award for Rookie Pitcher); Caught Ed Halicki’s no-hitter on 8/24/75; In 1973 he had an unassisted double play and an inside-the-park home run

Career Highlights:
A 1st round draft pick (18th overall) of the Giants in 1967

Card Stuff:
Dave Rader’s photo was inadvertently used on Larry Cox’ 1979 Topps card;  That’s Dave Concepcion at bat on Rader’s 1973 card featured above


DOUG RADER

1976 SSPC #59

Played 1967 – 1977
1970’s Teams: Astros, Padres, Blue Jays

1970’s Highlights:
Won five Gold Gloves at third base; Had 20+ home runs in 1970, 1972 and 1973

Career Highlights:
Managed the Rangers, White Sox (for 2 games) and Angels, but didn’t finish higher than 3rd place

Fun Stuff:
His nickname is “The Red Rooster”

Card Stuff:
Appears in 1978 Topps with the Blue Jays team he’d hit 13 home runs for in the second half of 1977, but he was released at the end of 1978 spring training and retired, so his 1978 card has his full career stats

The 1970’s, A To Z: Gaylord Perry to Rico Petrocelli

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.


GAYLORD PERRY

1970 Kellogg’s #20

Played 1962 – 1983
1970’s Teams: Giants, Indians, Rangers, Padres

1970’s Highlights:
Won Cy Young Awards in each league, the first to do so – in 1972 with Cleveland when he went 24-16 with a 1.92 ERA and 29 complete games, and in 1978 with San Diego when he went 21-6 with a 2.73 ERA; Both Cy Young Awards came in his first season with a new team; Had four 20 win seasons, three of which lead the league; was a four-time All-Star; Was the starting AL pitcher in the 1974 All-Star Game

Career Highlights:
Inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1991; Won 314 career games and struck out 3,534 batters; Holds the San Francisco single-season mark with 328.2 IP; Was the third pitcher in history (after Walter Johnson and Bob Gibson) to reach the 3,000 strikeout mark… currently sits at 8th overall

Fun Stuff:
His brother is Jim Perry, who also won a Cy Young and who is featured next

Card Stuff:
Appeared in every flagship Topps set of the 1970s; Appeared in every Hostess set of the 1970s; Had a solo rookie card in 1962 but then was featured on a multi-player “Rookie Stars” card in 1963; His 1975 Hostess card uses the same photo as his 1974 Topps card


JIM PERRY

1970 Kellogg’s #64

Played 1959 – 1975
1970’s Teams: Twins, Tigers, Indians, A’s

1970’s Highlights:
Won the 1970 Cy Young Award after leading the league with 24 wins plus striking out 168 with an ERA of 3.04… He and Gaylord are the only brothers to have both won the Cy Young; In 1974 and 1975 he and Gaylord were teammates with the Indians

Career Highlights:
Won 20 games in 1969; lead the league with 18 wins and 4 shutouts in 1960; Finished 2nd in 1959 AL Rookie of the Year voting and was named to that year’s Topps All-Star Rookie team


GARY PETERS

1971 Topps #225

Played 1959 – 1972
1970’s Teams: Red Sox

1970’s Highlights:
Won 16 games in 1970 and 14 games in 1971; Was the Red Sox opening day starter in 1970; Despite giving up only 2 ER, was the losing pitcher in White Sox 22-13 win over the Red Sox, 5/31/70

Career Highlights:
Was the AL Rookie of the Year in 1963; Was an All-Star in 1964 and 1967; Lead the AL in ERA in 1963 and 1966; Lead the league in wins in 1964

Fun Stuff:
A good hitter for a pitcher, Peters homered in 9 straight seasons and had a .222 career average

Card Stuff:
The photos for Peters and teammate J.C. Martin were switched on their 1960 Topps cards

Nobody cares, but…
The last card I obtained when I completed my 1968 Topps Game insert set was Gary Peters


FRITZ PETERSON

1976 Cleveland Indians Team-Issued postcard

Played 1966 – 1976
1970’s Teams: Yankees, Indians, Rangers

1970’s Highlights:
Won 20 games in 1970, was an All-Star and lead the league with a WHIP of 1.102 (not that anybody tracked that in 1970); Was the starting pitcher for the last game at original Yankee Stadium, 9/30/73

Career Highlights:
Has the best career ERA of any lefty in the original Yankee Stadium and has the lowest WHIP of any post-WWII Yankees starting pitcher; Is among the Yankees leaders for longest career without a postseason appearance

Fun Stuff:
During the 1972/73 season he did color commentary for the New York Raiders of the World Hockey Association (He had played semi-pro hockey before dedicating himself to baseball)


RICO PETROCELLI

1975 Hostess #132

Played 1963 – 1976
1970’s Teams: Red Sox

1970’s Highlights:
Batted .308 with 3 runs and 4 RBI in the 1975 World Series; Had 29 HR and a career-high 103 RBI in 1970; Was the Red Sox starting shortstop, then 3rd baseman for most of his career

Career Highlights:
Was the AL’s starting All-Star shortstop in 1967 and 1969; In 1969 he set an AL record for a shortstop by hitting 40 HRs (a record broken by Alex Rodriguez in 1998); Was inducted into the Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame in 1997; Was named to the 1965 Topps All-Star Rookie Team

The 1970’s, A To Z: Freddie Patek to Tony Perez

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.


FREDDIE PATEK

1973 Topps #334

Played 1968 – 1981
1970’s Teams: Pirates, Royals

1970’s Highlights:
Was the AL’s starting shortstop in the 1978 All-Star Game and was also an All-Star in two other seasons; Lead the AL with 53 stolen bases in 1977 and his 49 steals in 1971 was second-best in the AL; Lead the league with 11 triples in 1971, which was a Royals team record for several years; Hit for the cycle against the Twins, 7/9/71

Career Highlights:
Inducted into the Kansas City Royals Hall of Fame in 1992

Fun Stuff:
I love this quote from the 5’5″ Patek: “I’d rather be the smallest player in the majors than the tallest player in the minors”; Of his 5 home runs in 1980, three came in the same game against the Red Sox

Card Stuff:
Appeared in every flagship Topps set of the 1970s


MARTY PATTIN

1970 Topps #31

Played 1968 – 1980
1970’s Teams: Brewers, Red Sox, Royals

1970’s Highlights:
Was an All-Star in 1971 when he finished with a 14-14 record and a 3.13 ERA… but keep in mind that his Brewers lost 92 games that year; Lost a no-hitter when Reggie Jackson singled with 1 out in the 9th, 7/11/72; His 5 shutouts in 1971 is still 2nd all-time among Brewers pitchers; Was the Brewers opening day starter in 1971 and the Red Sox opening day starter in 1972

Fun Stuff:
Was the last Red Sox pitcher to bat before the DH; Both of his career home runs were two-run homers hit in 1972 in Fenway Park off of Brewers’ pitcher Bill Parsons in the 2nd inning with 2 outs… but came a couple of months apart

Card Stuff:
Appeared in every flagship Topps set of the 1970s


TONY PEREZ

1977 O-Pee-Chee #135

Played 1964 – 1986
1970’s Teams: Reds, Expos

1970’s Highlights:
Starting 3rd Baseman for the NL in the 1970 All-Star Game; Hit a career-best 40 home runs n 1970 (3rd best in the NL that season); Got MVP votes in 1970, 1973 and 1975; Had 100+ RBI in 1970, 1973, 1974 and 1975; His 129 RBI in 1970 was second only to teammate Johnny Bench; His 109 RBI in 1975 was 3rd behind Bench and leader Greg Luzinski; Batted .435 in the 1972 World Series with 2 doubles and 2 RBI

Career Highlights:
Inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2000; His #24 was retired by the Reds; Was a 7-time All-Star; Drove in 1,652 career runs; Played in the World Series four times; Managed the 1993 Reds and the 2001 Marlins, but didn’t finish the season with either team; Was named to the Topps All-Star Rookie Team in 1965; Hit a 15th inning game-winning homer off of Catfish Hunter in the 1967 All-Star Game and was named the game’s MVP

Fun Stuff:
He hit the first home run in Cincinnati’s Three Rivers Stadium, 7/16/70; Was the last player to homer off of Juan Marichal (1975); Was the victim of Hoyt Wilhelm’s final strikeout (6/26/72)

Card Stuff:
Appeared in every flagship Topps set of the 1970s; Between Topps and O-Pee-Chee there were three very different versions of Tony Perez cards in 1977… The OPC above showing a spring training photo with the Expos, the regular Topps card shows him with the Reds and the Topps Cloth Stickers test set shows Tony in an airbrushed Expos cap…

And finally, since I don’t have many vintage HOFer rookie cards – at least not ones before 1972 or 1973 – here’s Tony’s rookie card… which I bought because Kevin Collins in the lower left completed my 1965 Topps Mets team set