In other news, this card wraps up my super-late recap of the multi-card trade with Kris Shepard. Thanks again, Chris!
Fun facts about Sammy Ellis:
-A native of Youngstown, OH, Sammy signed with the Reds in 1961 after a brief time at Mississippi State University.
-He had a sterling 34-19 record in his first three seasons in the minors.
-Had a few brief stints in Cincinnati in 1962. He was 21 years old when he won his first game on April 24, a 7-3 decision over the Mets. He allowed only 1 hit in 5 innings, but walked 11!
-In his true rookie season of 1964, he served as the Reds' bullpen ace (10-3, 2.57 ERA). He was the club leader in appearances (52), saves (14), strikeouts per nine innings (9.2), and strikeout-to-walk ratio (4.46).
-A move to the rotation in 1965 was an instant success, as Sammy went 22-10 with a 3.79 ERA. He was Cincy's wins leader and also paced the team with 15 complete games en route to an All Star selection.
-Outdueled Sandy Koufax on July 28, 1965, allowing four hits in a complete game victory over the Dodgers. Ellis permitted a single run and struck out 12, one off of his personal best.
-His good fortune ran out the following year, with a 12-19 record that was closely tied to a sky-high 5.29 ERA. The righthander also gave up 35 home runs, the most in the league.
-Arm problems crept in in subsequent years, and Ellis was out of the major leagues by 1969 and finished as a pro pitcher two years after that. He put in a season each with the Angels and White Sox and finished 63-58 with a 4.15 ERA in parts of 7 seasons.
-How did Sammy fare against Hall of Famers? Pretty good vs. Roberto Clemente (.216/.259/.431, 12K in 51 AB). Not so good against Hank Aaron (.421/.439/.974, 7 HR in 38 AB).
-He has been a pitching instructor for several organizations, and served at various times on the major league staffs of the Yankees, White Sox, Cubs, Mariners, Red Sox, and Orioles.