Monday, April 29, 2013

1981 Donruss, Dave Revering

#117 Dave Revering

Here is the card that Dave Revering signed for me last month. I sent this card to him on the first of March and I had it back fifteen days later.

Dave played in the Majors for five seasons. He spent the first three and a half years with Oakland before seeing time with the Yankees, Blue Jays, and Mariners over the last season and a half. He saw significant playing time in his first three seasons, hitting over .270 with 20+ doubles and double digit home run totals in each season. His biggest season was his second season when he hit .288 with 19 dingers and 77 RBI.

Then 1981 came and he was hitting just .230 through 31 games. He was traded to the Yankees and didn't hit much in limited playing time. It was more of the same the next season as he split time with the Yanks, Jays, and M's. That was the last season he played.

1981 Donruss Tracker: 106/100

I didn't realize posting from my phone would be this difficult. I'll do some touching up when I get back from Birmingham.

Friday, April 26, 2013

1981 Donruss, Scott McGregor

#114 Scott McGregor

Here is Scott McGregor's '81 Donrusss card. I sent this one to him in November and I got it back two weeks later.

Scott pitched his entire thirteen-year career with Baltimore. Over that time, he was 138-108 with 5 saves and a 3.99 ERA. His best season was probably in 1980 when he went 20-8 with a 3.32 ERA and 119 strikeouts. That 20 win season only got him one Cy Young vote as he tied for sixth for the award. His teammate, Steve Stone, brought home the award with his 25 win season.

This the last post for about a week. I am going to try to go to a Kansas State baseball game tonight if the weather permits. Kirk Saarloos is TCU's pitching coach this year, so I am going to try to get him. Then I'll be at a Royals game tomorrow before heading down to Birmingham for a work conference on Sunday. But, I will try to get the next '81 Donruss up next Friday.

'81 Donruss Tracker: 105/100

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

1981 Donruss, Mickey Klutts

#110 Mickey Klutts

Next up is Mickey Klutts. Mickey played in the Majors for parts of eight seasons, but he only got into 199 games during that time. He played with the Yankees, A's, and Blue Jays during his career and he got the most playing time with Oakland in 1980. That season, he got into 75 games and he had 197 at-bats. He compiled a .269 average while having 14 doubles, 4 home runs, and 21 RBI.

The following season, he did not get called up until the end of August and he was hot. He only got into 15 games, but hit a home run in the first two he played in and then had a two home run game in September. He finished out the year with a career-high 5 dingers while only getting 46 at-bats. Plus, he hit .370 in the brief call-up.

For his career, Gene Ellis Klutts was a .241 hitter with 14 home runs.

I sent this card to him in November and I had it back eleven days later.

'81 Donruss Tracker: 104/100

Sunday, April 21, 2013

1981 Donruss, Dave Chalk

#101 Dave Chalk

Next up is the former Angel, Ranger, Athletic, and Royal, Dave Chalk. I sent this card to Dave in November and I had it back about two weeks later.

Dave was a first round pick by the Angels in 1972 and he made his Major League debut the following season. In 1974 and '75, he was an All Star for the Angels despite hitting just .252 and .273, respectively. I know that those are season ending numbers and the game is played in July, but there isn't anything spectacular-looking about any of his numbers during those seasons (unless you count leading the league in errors). I thought that maybe he might have been the lone representative for the Halos since each team needs at least one, but Frank Robinson also made it in '74 and Nolan Ryan was selected in '75.

Dave finished his career with the Royals in 1981 as a back-up infielder. He has a .252 career average and he hit 15 home runs. And, he made two All Star teams.

'81 Donruss Tracker: 103/100

Thursday, April 18, 2013

1981 Donruss, Tom Burgmeier

#97 Tom Burgmeier

Here is my autograph from Tom Burgmeier. I sent this card to Tom in September and I had it back eight days later. Tom was the pitching coach for the Omaha Royals a few years ago and I tried to get his autograph at the ballpark a couple of times without any success. People have a 95% success rate when writing to Tom, so he is a good TTM signer. It is always funny to me when guys will sign every piece of fan mail that they get but are reluctant to sign at the park.

Tom pitched in the Bigs for seventeen seasons with the Angels, Royals, Twins, Red Sox, and A's. He never played in the playoffs, but he did rack up a record of 79-55 in 742 relief outings while converting 102 saves. His best season came in 1980 when he had a career-high 24 saves and posting a 2.00 ERA. He made his lone All Star team that season, but did not pitch in the game.

'81 Donruss Tracker: 102/100

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

1981 Donruss, Tommy Hutton

#93 Tommy Hutton

Next up is Tommy Hutton. Tommy played in the Majors for parts of twelve seasons after making his debut as a twenty-year old in 1966. He got into three games that year with the Dodgers and it wouldn't be until 1969 that he saw Major League action again. He played in sixteen games that year before heading back down to the minors for a couple of seasons. He resurfaced in 1972 with the Phillies and would play in the Majors every year until he retired after the 1981 season.

For his career, Tom was a .248 hitter and he had 22 home runs. He was a back-up for most of his career, but he did get into 134 games with the Phils in 1972. That season, he hit .260 with 5 home runs and 38 RBI as the Phillies everyday first baseman.

Tommy seems to have loved hitting Tom Seaver. Seaver was the picher that he had the most plate appearances against, and Tommy hit 3 home runs off of him while hitting .320 and driving in 15. He also walked 11 times versus only 5 strikeouts. Tommy also liked to hit against Hall of Famers Bob Gibson and Fergie Jenkins. He hit .323 and .321 against them, respectively.

I sent this card to Tommy in November and I had it back about two weeks later.

'81 Donruss Tracker: 101/100

Saturday, April 13, 2013

1981 Donruss, Sal Bando

#84 Sal Bando

This is the second Sal Bando that I have posted on this blog. The first one was posted four years ago and it can be seen here. That card was given to me. This one, on the other hand, was pulled out of a pack from the box I busted in 2007. I sent this card to Sal to get signed in the middle of January and I got it back about three weeks later. I would have sent this card to him earlier, but I was waiting on another card to send along with this one.

Sal had a long Major League career that spanned sixteen seasons. He played with the A's and Brewers and was a three-time All Star early in his career with Oakland. He finished his career a .254 hitter with 242 home runs and more walks than strikeouts. His best season was in 1969 when he had 31 home runs and 113 RBI, both career highs.

'81 Donruss Tracker: 99/100

Friday, April 12, 2013

1981 Donruss, Joe Strain

#73 Joe Strain

This card is one of my more recent additions to the set. Most of my '81 Donruss cards were acquired in 2007 when I picked up an unopened box on Ebay for about thirty bucks. By the beginning of this year, I had sent out most of those cards that I had to the guys that were the best signers. But, there are a lot of great signers out there that I did not have cards of, so I started looking at my options for getting the cards of those guys.

The first place I looked was Check Out My Cards (yes, I know it is called Collectibles now, but it is still Cards to me). There are a lot of cards from the set on there, but the cheapest you can pick one up for is about fifty cents. I might spend that on a Hall of Fame player from the set, but I am not going to do it for a common. Then, I finally checked out Sportslots and I was really pleased with my results. After playing around a bit and finding ways to minimize the shipping costs, I was able to pick up a healthy stack of cards from the set for eighteen cents a piece. This is one of the cards that I got from the lot. I sent it to Joe at the beginning of last month and I had it back eleven days later.

Joe is another Major League short-timer that is featured in the '81 Donruss set. His career lasted 169 games over three seasons with the Giants and Cubs. He is listed as a shortstop on this card, but Joe only played short in one Major League game. He mainly played second, though he did play a few times at third, too. Joe was a .250 hitter and he hit one home run. That one home run was hit in the top of the ninth of a tied game against the Expos in 1979. It could have been the game winner, but Gary Lavelle was unable to convert the save.

'81 Donruss Tracker: 98/100

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

1981 Donruss, John Fulgham

#70 John Fulgham

The next card from the set is from John Fulgham. John had a brief Major League career that spanned just parts of two seasons with the Cardinals. His rookie season in 1979 was pretty good, though, as he finished the year 10-6 with a 2.53 ERA. The most impressive stat from that season was that he finished 10 of the 19 games that he started.

All of those complete games must have took a toll on his arm, though. The next season, he pitched in just 15 games before missing all of the following season. He came back in 1982 and pitched in 18 minor league games. He pitched in 5 minor league games the next year before calling it a career.

John finished with a 14-12 record and 2.84 ERA with 123 strikeouts.

I sent this card to him towards the beginning of November and I had it back eleven days later.

'81 Donruss Tracker: 97/100

Monday, April 8, 2013

1981 Donruss, Ed Halicki

#53 Ed Halicki

Next up is the former Giant and Angel, Ed Halicki. I sent this card to Ed in November and I had it back about three weeks later.

Ed spent six and a half years of his seven year career with San Francisco before spending his final half season in Anaheim. During that time, he was 56-66 with a save and a 3.62 ERA. His best season was in 1977 when he went 16-12 with a 3.32 ERA and 168 strikeouts.

Ed's claim to fame is tossing a no-hitter against the Mets in 1975. He finished that day with two walks and ten strikeouts.

Ed's ballpoint pen signature is kind of hard to make out over his jersey. But, with the dark color of the jersey, nothing is really going to stand out on it.

'81 Donruss Tracker: 96/100

Sunday, April 7, 2013

1981 Donruss, Tom Donohue

#51 Tom Donohue

Next up is the former Angel catcher, Tom Donohue. Tom played parts of two seasons with the Halos and got into 122 games with them. The former first round pick was a .200 hitter and clubbed 5 home runs and drove in 28 for his career. One of Tom's home runs was off of Fergie Jenkins.

I sent this card to Tom in October and I had it back six days later.

'81 Donruss Tracker: 95/100

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

1981 Donruss, Leon Roberts

#48 Leon Roberts

Here is another '81 Donruss card that I got signed through the mail over the past year (this is going to be a common trend over the next few months). I did, however, try to get this card signed in person last summer. Actually, I had my dad try. Leon is the hitting coach for the Oklahome City Redhawks and we went to a game when they were playing the Omaha Storm Chasers. Since Omaha is the Royals AAA affiliate, my girlfriend and I 'graphed the Omaha side while we sent my dad over to 'graph the home team side. My girlfriend and I tallied over thirty autos that day while my dad got none. He was a little disappointed over the shutout, too, which is funny to me. Five years ago, I had to beg and plead with him to go and try to get a signature from someone. Now he will do it without me having to ask him twice. He has come a long way.

But, since I did not get this card signed at that game, I sent it to Leon after the season was over and I had it back in less than a week.

Leon played in the Majors for eleven seasons. He played with the Tigers, Astros, Mariners, Rangers, Blue Jays, and Royals. He was mainly a fourth outfielder-type, though he did play everyday for a few seasons. One of those seasons was 1978 with the M's and he had a career year that season. He finished the year with a .301 average with 22 home runs, 92 RBI, and 78 runs, all of which were career highs and team highs. For his career, Leon was .267 hitter who collected 78 home runs.

Leon's final season came in 1984 with the Royals and he had the opportunity to make his pitching debut that season. In an early July game in Cleveland, Royals starter Bud Black got shelled for seven first inning runs. The club went to their bullpen in the second inning and by the eighth inning, they were down 12-3. Kansas City threw Leon out the for the bottom of the inning and things did not get any better. Leon surrendered three more runs that inning on four hits and a walk. One of the four hits was a homer by Chris Bando. Leon did manage to strikeout Mel Hall to lead off the inning, though.

'81 Donruss Tracker: 94/100