Tuesday, September 28, 2010

#326 - Wayne Twitchell


Card fact: My copy of this card is miscut. You can see the blue border from another card showing at the top. I am assuming that the blue is from a card with a blue-and-orange border, because I believe that the cards in the row adjacent to the row featuring the Twitchell card would have been upside down. That is, if I understand the printing process of the time correctly.

If they weren't upside down, then the card could have a red-and-blue border or a tan-and-blue border, because the blue border on those cards was on the bottom half of the card, unlike the blue-and-orange borders, which were on the top half.

As you can see, I've put way too much thought into this.

What I thought about this card then: I had the mini card. I think my brother and maybe a friend had the regular-sized Wayne Twitchell card, too, and then the regular-sized card worked its way into my collection. It was one of the more common card pulls in the '75 set, according to my little circle of scruffy kids.

Also, I thought Twitchell looked goofy. He has a similar pose to that of Phillies pitcher Ron Schueler in this set.


Both are lanky pitchers (Twitchell was 6-foot-6 and Schueler 6-4). Both pitched for the Phillies. And both posed in Candlestick Park. I half-believed those were the only kind of pitchers the Phillies had.

What I think about this card now: Well, I'm saddened by it because Twitchell just passed away less than two weeks ago at age 62 after battling cancer.

Other stuff: Twitchell pitched for the Phillies most of his career, but came up to the major with the Brewers. After a trade, he became a regular part of the Phillies' starting rotation in 1973, reaching the All-Star Game. He suffered a setback in his 1974 season and pretty soon was relegated to a relief role.

The Phillies traded Twitchell to the Expos in 1977. After a couple of so-so seasons with Montreal, he spent his final season in 1979 with the Mets and Mariners. Knee ailments hampered his career and forced him to call it quits early.

He later worked in real estate, but returned to his high school alma mater to help out as a coach. He was inducted into the Oregon State Hall of Fame. This is a detailed account of Twitchell's career.


Back facts: The write-up is a pretty cool career highlight for Mr. Twitchell. That's well worth a major league career right there.

But I admit that as a kid I competely missed the write-up. Instead, I liked the cartoon strawberry and was alarmed by Twitchell's 5.22 ERA in 1974.

Other blog stuff: On this date in 1975, four Oakland A's pitchers -- Vida Blue, Glenn Abbott, Paul Lindblad and Rollie Fingers -- combined to pitch a no-hitter against the Angels on the last day of the season. It was the first time in MLB history that as many as four pitchers combined on a no-hitter.

3 comments:

Play at the Plate said...

I got really turned around trying to follow the color-combo thing in the "CARD FACT" section. I'm sorry to hear about Twitchell's passing.

The Strawberry cartoon and the write-up are both great. I've had my share of those strawberries. The great write-up on the back of a card, not so many.

smedcards said...

I think certain years have much more miscuts than others. The 1975 cards I got from my college friend had a lot of miscuts.

And then there's Donruss...

MCT said...

Are miscuts more common on the '75s, or are they just more noticeable because the color 1) goes all the way to the edge of the card and 2) varies from card to card?

Most other Topps cards from the '60s and '70s either have white around the edge of the card, or a border design that is common to all cards. In those cases, a slight miscut might be less obvious.