Card fact: This is Bill Travers' rookie card. Or "Billy Travers," as he apparently preferred.
What I thought about this card then: I did not see it.
What I think about this card now: Please note the Oakland A's in the background. And note the pained expression on Travers' face as he looks to the stands for help in facing the World Champion A's.
Now look at Travers' card from the 1976 Topps set.
The guy needs help facing the A's! He's been looking for a year now! Somebody HELP HIM!
Other stuff: Travers pitched most of his career for the Brewers. He struggled with arm problems in the minors, but emerged with Milwaukee in 1974. A forkball helped him stake a spot in the rotation, and he enjoyed a few solid seasons with the Brewers. He went 14-8 in 1979 and 12-6 in 1980.
After the 1980 season, he signed a free agent deal with the Angels. But arm problems struck again and Travers pitched in only 14 games over three seasons for the Angels, ending his career in 1983.
Travers later played on the candlepin bowlers' circuit in Massachusetts, his home state.
Back facts: A "bottle bat" is a bat that doesn't taper from the end to the handle. The bat's body is all one width and wide, like a bottle. It then ends suddenly at the "bottle neck," where the handle begins. It's almost as if the bat is two separate pieces. It's strange. But then again, so is the name "Heinie."
Other blog stuff: Happy 67th birthday to George "Boomer" Scott, born today in 1944. He didn't use no bottle bat.