Thursday, May 21, 2009

#93 Jack Fisher

#93 Jack Fisher
This is a visually interesting card, as we see "Fat Jack" Fisher checking the imaginary runner at first base from the set position. Nice to have some variation in the old "arms over head" and "just finished delivery" pitching poses that are all over this set. Also noteworthy is the patch on Jack's left sleeve, which commemorates the World's Fair that was held at Shea Stadium. It features the Unisphere structure that was built for the event, and it's rendered in the Mets' blue and orange color scheme.

Fun facts about Jack Fisher:

-Originally from Frostburg, MD, signed with the Orioles at age eighteen in 1957.

-Debuted with the O's at age 20, going 1-6 in 27 games (seven starts) despite a 3.05 ERA. He made his first win count, though; on September 11, he retired the first nineteen White Sox batters before Nellie Fox singled with one out in the seventh. Fisher completed the shutout, allowing three hits in total and beating the eventual American League champs 3-0.

-His sophomore year was his best all-around effort, as he posted his only winning record (12-11) with a 3.41 ERA. He relieved in 20 games, and started 20 others (completing eight).

-Jack had a penchant for surrendering milestone home runs. In 1960, he served up the 521st and final longball of Ted Williams' career, in the latter's farewell game. The following year, Roger Maris tied Babe Ruth's single-season record with his 60th homer, also off of Fisher. Finally, in 1964 the righty was taken deep by Willie Stargell for the first home run ever hit in Shea Stadium.

-Fisher was twice traded in deals that greatly helped the team he was leaving: in 1962, the Orioles sent him and two others to the Giants and received Stu Miller (their relief ace for several seasons) and John Orsino (19 HR in 1963). Five years later, the Mets sent him to the White Sox in a six-player deal that netted them Tommie Agee and Al Weis, both of whom were instrumental in the 1969 World Series upset over Baltimore.

-As previously mentioned, Jack had the misfortune of toiling for the Mets in the "lovable losers" era. He pitched four full seasons in Flushing, going 38-73 despite a passable 4.12 ERA. He led the N.L. with 24 losses in 1965 and 18 in 1967.

-Despite an 8-13 record with the White Sox in 1968, his 2.99 ERA was a career best.

-Held Hall of Famer Orlando Cepeda to a .171 average (7-for-41, 1 2B, 0 HR).

-A 5.50 mark with the Reds in 1969 ended his career. In eleven seasons he was 86-139 with a 4.06 ERA. Incidentally, he allowed less than one HR per nine innings (0.9).

-Fisher spent some time coaching before opening Fat Jack's, a sports bar in Easton, PA.
#93 Jack Fisher (back)


  1. At the last card show I was at, Jack Fisher was advertised among those signing autographs.

    Listed as his claim to fame were all the milestone home runs he gave up. No positive exploits listed, just "I threw some epic gopher balls."

    I guess as long as they spell your name right ...

  2. Jack Fisher =

    Cash if jerk =

    Hijacks ref

  3. night owl - and the check clears, don't forget that...

  4. There is something about the posed shots of hitters, fielders, and pitchers that made the old cards more enjoyable ( we used to get a kick out of imitating the poses as kids ) than when the action shots started coming into vogue in the early '70's

  5. Anon - I feel like a good balance of posed and action shots would be alright. The thing I love with action shots is when you can pick up on context clues (out-of-town scoreboard, interleague opponent, etc.) to figure out specifically which game is being played. I've done that with a few Upper Deck cards on my Orioles blog.