Wednesday, March 18, 2009

#589 Giants Rookie Stars: Frank Linzy and Bob Schroder

#589 Frank Linzy, Bob Schroder
It's Head Accessory Day here at The Great 1965 Topps Project! It's hard to say which is more impressive: Frank Linzy's giant oversized glasses that give him the appearance of someone at least twice his age, or Bob Schroder's ill-fitting batting helmet, which makes him look like a bobblehead doll.

Fun facts about Frank Linzy:

-A sinkerballer out of Oklahoma State University, Frank signed with the Giants in 1960.

-After a brief taste of the majors in 1963, arrived in the big leagues to stay in 1965 and turned in a career year as the Giants' fireman: 9-3, 21 saves (second in the N.L.) and a 1.43 ERA in 57 games. He placed third in Rookie of the Year voting and was a Topps All-Star Rookie.

-How effective was Linzy when it came to keeping the ball in the park? In 1965, he allowed two home runs. That's one more than he himself hit that year!

-Another strong effort came in 1967, as he went 7-7 with 17 saves, a 1.51 ERA, and a 1.06 WHIP.

-On September 1, 1967, pitched five shutout innings to earn the win in a 21-inning, 1-0 Giants victory over the Reds. He relieved Gaylord Perry, who had blanked Cincinnati for the first 16 frames.

-Led the National League in relief wins with 14 in 1969.

-According to Linzy, the Giants sent him a contract prior to the 1970 season, and he absent-mindedly filed it in a drawer. When three weeks passed without the contract being returned to the Giants, team president Horace Stoneham called the pitcher and offered him another $2,000 to get the deal done, assuming that Frank was playing hardball!

-In a little over five seasons in San Francisco, won 48 games (all as a reliever) and saved another 78 (sixth-best in team history).

-Also pitched for the Cardinals, Brewers, and Phillies, and retired in 1974 with 111 career saves and a 2.85 ERA.

-Frank is still living in Oklahoma, and is apparently a faithful signer when it comes to through-the-mail autograph requests. If you've got a card that you'd like him to sign, here's his address.

Fun facts about Bob Schroder:

-His college (Loyola University New Orleans) was far from his home (Ridgefield, NJ). He was the first of four Loyola players to make the major leagues, and is still the all-time leader among them in games played and most every other offensive category

-Signed with the Giants in 1964 and made the major leagues the very next year at age twenty.

-Got only nine at-bats with San Francisco in 1965, seeing most of his action as a pinch runner.

-His first major-league hit was a pinch single off of Hall of Famer Jim Bunning.

-Pinch-hit for Juan Marichal after the pitcher was ejected for attacking Dodgers catcher John Roseboro with a bat in an infamous incident in 1965. He struck out against L.A. starter Sandy Koufax.

-Had his best season as a pro with AAA Phoenix in 1966, hitting .317 with 31 doubles.

-Played just 138 games in the bigs (1965-1968), all with the Giants. Hit .217 for his career with no home runs and 12 RBI.

-Was 5-for-12 (.417) in his career against Don Drysdale, his highest hit total off of any pitcher.

-Hung around at AAA with the Giants, Cubs, and Brewers through 1971 before heading home for good.
#589 Frank Linzy, Bob Schroder (back)

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