Monday, September 29, 2014

A practice run

In an attempt to start getting ready for my '59 Topps set build, I decided to do a test run today.   But instead of using a card from the '59 set, I decided to take a quick look at one of the '72 Topps cards I received today from Marcus at the all the way to the backstop blog.   The '72 set is something I want to put together, but right now is behind a few other sets that I am working on.

I plan on using this post as a way to generate ideas for the '59 Topps posts.  A practice run if you will.

Let's see how this goes....

1972 Topps Clay Kirby # 173

Career beginnings:  Drafted in the 3rd round of the 1966 amateur draft.  The Padres made him their 12th pick in the 1968 expansion draft.

Awards/League Leader/Titles
  • Clay won no individual awards during his 7 year career.  
  • He led the NL with 20 losses in 1969.   
  • Clay was also one of 6 starters on the 1975 Cincinnati Reds team that won the World Series; however he did not appear in either the NLCS against the Pirates, or the World Series against the Red Sox.

Clay Kirby passed away in 1991 at the age of 43 from a heart attack.

The Padres lost his no hitter in the 9th, and the game, 3-1.

Career Line:  75-104, 3.84 ERA, 1.384 WHIP

Loved to face (career, min 20PA):  Garry Maddox--2 for 26 with 7 K's (.077)
Hated to face (career, min 20PA):  Davey Lopes--12 for 26 (.462)

How did he fare in 1972?  
  • 12-14 with a 3.13 ERA for a Padres team that went 58-95.  
  • On June 7th, Clay pitched the 2nd game of a doubleheader against the Pirates, going 13 innings (imagine that happening in today's game!!), and lost 1-0. That start was one of 4 (!) times that he pitched 10 innings or more during the '72 season.  My arm started to hurt just thinking about that. 

I found this auction on eBay; the cheapest card up for sale was $1.25 including shipping.

After previewing this post, I can see that some tweaks need to be made.  I'm pretty sure that the length of these posts will also vary, based on the player (star players like Mantle will have longer posts, while guys that didn't play as much will likely be a much quicker read...).

I welcome suggestions from anyone out there.  I'm sure that others may want to see things that I may not have thought about here, and those who have experience writing about sets likely will have thoughts that will be beneficial to me.

Marcus, thank you for the PWE that you sent today, the cards were really appreciated!

thanks for reading, Robert


  1. I like to breakdown based on the year of the card. I'm sure some interesting stuff will pop up.

  2. Quirky fact I just stumbled across while Googling Clay Kirby (I've never heard of him): In 1970, when he was lifted for a pinch-hitter during that no-hit bid, the batter that stepped in, and promptly struck out, was none other than Cito Gaston.

    Anyway, these kind of posts, however long or short, will be interesting to me, because I'll get to learn about a lot of players I'm not familiar with. I look forward to that ;)


  3. I'm with Matthew, I like the idea of showing how the player did in the year of the card. It was something that didn't occur to me until way into my blogging of that set.

    And with so many of the players in the '59 set being vets of Korea or even WWII maybe you could indicate that with a little icon of some sort. I wish I had done that, too.

    1. Bob, good call on the US Veteran designation....I'll have to figure out how to find that out...

    2. Robert, I had a routine on looking at players that included the players Baseball Reference page and the 'Bullpen' page linked there, the Wikipedia entry and usually the SABR bio (although not every player had one). The BR Bullpen page and Wikipedia almost always mention the player's service record since so many of them served back then.

      I'm looking forward to this. I really fell in love with the set when I was doing the blog. Writing about the players gives you a perspective that just collecting the set can't touch. I made a bunch of new favorites and I'm looking forward to seeing them again through a different set of 'eyes'.

      I've sent you a package with some '59s. They are ones I either had two of to begin with or 'upgraded' along the way. Some of them you may want to just use as placeholders but I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.

    3. Bob, I got your package today. Some great stuff in there, thank you so much!!

      Even the cards that one might classify as "filler" will probably stick around for quite a while. I got a kick out of the Frank Herrera card with "Expos" written on it. It actually made me laugh.