Tuesday, August 10, 2010

#324 Bobby Locke

#324 Bobby Locke
Here's a different sight in this set: a full-body airbrushing. If you know your 1960s uniforms, the pinstripes and the big red "TV numbers" on the sleeve were worn by the Indians from 1958-1962. Bobby Locke pitched in Cleveland from 1958-1961, and the only team he wore #29 with was the Tribe, so this photo is at least three years old. I call shenanigans, Topps!

Fun facts about Bobby Locke:

-A native of Rowes Run, PA, Bobby signed with the Indians in 1953 at age 19. He sometimes was called Larry, as his birth name was Lawrence Donald Locke.

-Though he won 56 games in his first four years in pro ball, he didn't make it to the majors until 1959, when he was 25. His minor league stats show that he did not play at all in 1957 and 1958.

-He was hit hard in his major league debut, but all was not lost. He received a no-decision and hit his only career home run, a three-run shot off of opposing pitcher Frank Sullivan.

-Pitched in 24 games as a rookie, primarily in relief, going 3-2 with two saves and a 3.13 ERA.

-Tossed the only two shutouts of his career in 1960: a six-hitter against Detroit on June 5 and a four-hitter against Chicago on September 25.

-Between November 27, 1961 and April 28 of the following year he was passed around by four teams: the Indians, the Cubs (whom he never played a game with), the Cardinals, and the Phillies.

-Did not exceed 20 innings pitched in the major leagues in any season between 1962 and 1967; spent all of 1966 in the minors, in fact.

-His MLB career ended ignominiously, as he racked up a 6.44 ERA in 29 games with the Angels in 1968 and blew a save in his final appearance by allowing a game-tying single to Leon Wagner, the only batter he faced. Tom Burgmeier replaced him and eventually allowed his runner to score as the White Sox prevailed 7-6.

-Locke pitched at AAA Hawaii and Syracuse in 1969 before finally hanging up his spikes. In parts of nine major league seasons he was 16-15 with a 4.02 ERA and ten saves (two saves total in each of five separate seasons, oddly enough).

-According to Baseball Library, he worked as a hairdresser.
#324 Bobby Locke (back)

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