Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Thomson & Young Join Coaching Staff; No Ex-Phils on Staff

1998 Phillies Team Issue #18
The Phillies' 2018 coaching staff continues to take shape with the addition of Rob Thomson as the bench coach, Chris Young as the assistant pitching coach and Rick Kranitz officially getting the title of pitching coach.  At this point, only a first base coach is needed to round out Gabe Kapler's staff.

Thomson had served as the Yankees bench coach for four seasons (2008, 2015-2017) and their third base coach for six seasons (2009-2014).  He was one of the finalists for the Yankees' managerial vacancy, and that position was recently filled by Aaron Boone.  Thomson played four seasons in the Tigers' minor league system between 1985 and 1988.  His baseball cards can be found in a bunch of Tigers and Yankees minor league team sets and he received his sole mainstream card within 2009 Topps Heritage on a Yankees' coaches floating head card.

Young is not to be confused with the former All-Star outfielder or pitcher of the same name.  This Young pitched for six seasons in the Rockies, Pirates and Marlins systems but never made it to the big leagues.  He was the scouting supervisor for the Astros last season.  Young's baseball card appearances are sparse, with only two minor league cards to his name.

The recent coaching staff appointments had me thinking about this question:  When was the last time the Phillies' entire field staff was comprised of people who had never played for the Phillies?  I went back to 1970 (you can click on the chart below to enlarge) and I couldn't find one instance where there wasn't one ex-Phillie player as the team's manager or serving as a coach.  The names tinted in red below were one time Phillies players and there's nary a hint of red tint on the 2018 row.

In the last 49 seasons, there have been only a few times there have been only one ex-Phillie player on the staff:  Doc Edwards in 1970 and 1971, Bobby Wine from 1973 to 1976, John Vukovich from 1997 to 2000, and Milt Thompson in 2007 and 2008.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s - #12 Paul Abbott

#40
Paul David Abbott
Starting Pitcher

At the start of the Phillies inaugural year playing in Citizens Bank Park, their starting pitching rotation consisted of Kevin Millwood, Randy Wolf, Vicente Padilla, Eric Milton and Brett Myers.  Padilla was the first to land on the disabled list in late May followed by Wolf in early June.  Due to the thin pitching available from the Triple-A Red Barons, the Phillies signed Paul Abbott on June 7th and gave him his first start on June 13th.  He had released been released by the Devil Rays.  For a month and a half, Abbott kept his spot in the rotation but his services were no longer needed when Padilla returned from the DL on August 10th.  Abbott was outrighted to the Red Barons, getting five starts in Triple-A.  He was released following the season, ending his 11-year big league career.

He started 10 games for the Phillies, allowing two runs or more in every start except his first.

Bats:  Right  Throws:  Right  Height:  6'3"  Weight:  185
Born:  September 15, 1967, Van Nuys, CA
Drafted:  Drafted by the Minnesota Twins in the 3rd round of the amateur player draft, June 3, 1985.
Major League Teams:  Minnesota Twins 1990-1992; Cleveland Indians 1993; Seattle Mariners 1998-2002; Kansas City Royals 2003; Tampa Bay Devil Rays 2004; Phillies 2004
Professional Affiliations:  Minnesota Twins 1985-1992; Cleveland Indians 1993; Kansas City Royals 1994; Chicago Cubs 1995; San Diego Padres 1996; Seattle Mariners 1997-2002; Arizona Diamondbacks 2003; Kansas City Royals 2003; Tampa Bay Devil Rays 2004; Phillies 2004

Phillies Career
10 games, all starts - 1-6, 6.24 ERA, 49 innings pitched, 31 walks, 21 strikeouts, 14 home runs
Acquired:  Signed as a free agent formerly with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, June 3, 2004.
Debut:  June 13, 2004 - Received a no decision in his first start, pitching five shutout innings and allowing just three hits.
Final Game:  August 7, 2004 - Earned a loss in his final start, pitching 5 2/3 innings and allowing four runs on five hits and nine walks.
Departed:  September 8, 2004 - Released.

1991 Donruss #639
1992 Topps #781
2000 Pacific Paramount #217
2004 Topps Total #669
1 Abbott Baseball Card in My Collection
2004 Topps Total #669

Other Baseball Cards
First Mainstream Card:  1991 Donruss #639
First Topps Base Card:  1992 Topps #781
Last Mainstream Card:  2004 Topps Total #669
Other Notable Cards:  1986 ProCards Kenosha Twins #1, 1991 Topps Debut '90 #1, 2000 Pacific Paramount #217, 2002 Topps Total #490

Sources:  Baseball Reference and The Trading Card Database

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s
1 Kirk Bullinger
2 Chris Pritchett
3 Bryan Ward
4 Mark Holzemer
5 Turner Ward
6 P.J. Forbes
7 Matt Walbeck
8 Kelly Stinnett
9 Valerio de los Santos
10 Josh Hancock
11 Brian Powell
12 Paul Abbott

This is a continuing series looking at those players who spent time with the Phillies but possess no baseball card proof of their time in Philadelphia.  In some cases, the First and Last Mainstream cards listed above have been subjectively chosen if multiple cards were released in that year.

Monday, December 4, 2017

1934 and 1935 Diamond Matchbooks


At the recent Valley Forge baseball card show, I added nine different matchbooks to my collection, not exactly knowing what I was adding.  The matchbooks seemed extremely reasonably priced, and I hadn't seen anything like this before, so I was intrigued.  I went through the dealer's box labeled "1930s Matchbooks" and pulled out every Phillie I could find.  (As an aside, it was during my search that I finally met fellow collector Steve F. and his son Sam.)


It turns out the matchbooks I bought come from two different sets - a 200-matchbook set called the 1934 Diamond Matchbook - Silver Border set and a smaller 24-matchbook set called the 1935 Diamond Matchbook - Black Border set.  I found this listing in the Standard Catalog of Vintage Baseball Cards, and I thought I'd list the description of the set verbatim here:
During much of the Great Depression, the hobby of matchbook collecting swept the country.  Generally selling at two for a penny, the matchbooks began to feature photos and artwork to attract buyers.  In the late 1930s, several series of sports subjects were issued by Diamond Match Co. of New York City.  The first issue was a set of 200 baseball players known to collectors as "silver border" for the color of the photo frame on the approximately 1 1/2" x 4 1/8" (open) matchbooks. 
Player portrait or posed photos are printed in sepia on front, and can be found bordered in either red, green, blue or orange (although it is unclear whether all players can actually be found in the red version), theoretically creating an 800-piece color variation set.  The player's name and team are printed on the "saddle" and there is a career summary on back, along with a design of glove, ball and bats.  Matchbooks are commonly collected with the matches removed and the striker at the back-bottom intact.  Pieces without the striker are valued at 50 percent of these listed prices.
Given that last part, my matchbooks would be valued less than those with the striker intact, but I'm still happy to have them in my collection.  It looks as if there are 11 Phillies matchbooks in the set, so I'm missing four of them for a complete team set.

From the 1935 Diamond Matchbooks set, I added the two shown here and I need two more to complete the team set.  Chuck Klein is shown wearing a Cubs uniform, and the online databases I checked list this as a Cubs card.  However, I'm classifying it as a Phillies card given that's the team listed.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Merry Early Christmas! Michael Jack! (Valley Forge Report #7)


When we learned that Rhys Hoskins and Mike Schmidt would be signing autographs at the Valley Forge baseball card show this weekend, the entire family decided to make the trek for the occasion.  While our oldest son Doug is already a serious baseball card and autograph collector, our youngest son Ben hasn't quite taken the plunge yet.  It was Ben's first baseball card show and he was anxious to see what all the fuss was about.  My wife Jenna hadn't been to a baseball card show since before the boys were born.

The main goal of afternoon was to meet both Schmidt and Hoskins and perhaps also add autographs from the other show signers.  Steve Carlton, J.P. Crawford, Charlie Manuel and Pedro Feliz were all there, but the crowds were heavy (and the prices were high) so we limited our autographs to Hoskins and long-time Phillie Larry Bowa.  We opted for just a photo op with Schmidt.  The Hall of Famer was gracious and friendly to both boys and the picture of our family with him will feature prominently on the wall of the actual Phillies Room.


As for the baseball card haul from the show, both boys added their share of Phillies cards.  Ben added an autographed 8 x 10 photo of his favorite player, Ben Revere.  There was a booth giving away a free Lego mini figure to all kids, and that may have been the highlight of the show for Ben.  Ben also quickly discovered that many dealers were happy to give him free Phillies cards, especially more readily available cards of some of his favorite players like Hoskins or Carlos Ruiz. 

Doug added several autographed Phillies cards to his collection and his proudest acquisition was a complete 1988 Donruss factory set for just $1.  He also had fun walking around (and negotiating with dealers) with his friends Jacob and Josh.  My purchases included:
  • A group of Phillies matchbooks from the 1930s, that I'll need to research and feature in a future post.
  • 1967 Phillies Yearbook.
  • 5 more more cards for my 1971 Topps set, including the Ted Williams, Steve Garvey and Vida Blue cards.
  • A small selection of rare and/or blank backed Phillies photo cards.  I found a dealer in the back by the autograph stations who had a stack of prior year Phillies photo cards out on his table.  I instantly realized they were probably not the standard issued cards as one of the non-set cards for Aaron Harang was on top of the stack.

And speaking of which, I had the pleasure to finally meet fellow Phillies collector Steve F. who was there with his son Sam.  Steve - I hope you were able to get your 1980 Phillies poster autographed by Schmidt!  Overall, it was a great day!

Memory Lane
Valley Forge 1 - September 2010 - Thinking of my Dad
Valley Forge 2 - October 2012 - Doug's first baseball card show
Valley Forge 3 - September 2014 - Meeting Darren Daulton
Valley Forge 4 - September 2016 - Phillies acquisitions and 4 Phillies Legends
Valley Forge 5 - December 2016 - Meeting Don Money
Valley Forge 6 - September 2017 - Doug's big day
Valley Forge 7 - December 2017 - Ben's first baseball card show with Mike Schmidt and Rhys Hoskins!

Friday, December 1, 2017

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s - #11 Brian Powell

#51
William Brian Powell
Pitcher

Even though he wasn't even a non-roster invitee in spring training, Brian Powell was one of the first pitchers to be recalled early in the 2004 season when injuries started to hit the Phillies bullpen.  Unfortunately, Powell pitched in just one game for the Phillies that May before an injury claimed him as well.  He returned from the disabled list on June 15th, taking a young Chase Utley's spot on the active roster.  After receiving two spot starts, Powell was sent back to the bullpen pitching middle relief and serving as the occasional long man until he landed on the disabled list again on August 19th.  He was activated on September 3rd as part of the roster expansion, but pitched only once more (on September 24th) the rest of the season.

In 2005, Powell pitched in 29 games for the Nationals' Triple-A team before his professional playing career ended.  He played in parts of six seasons in the majors with the Tigers, Astros, Giants and Phillies, compiling a career record of 7-18 and a 5.94 ERA.

For the second Missing Link in a row, we have a young baseball player who left us way too soon.  Powell committed suicide in 2009 at the age of 35.

Bats:  Right  Throws:  Right  Height:  6'2"  Weight:  205
Born:  October 10, 1973, Bainbridge, GA
Died:  October 5, 2009, Tallahassee, FL
Drafted:  Drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the 2nd round of the amateur player draft, June 1, 1995.
Major League Teams:  Detroit Tigers 1998; Houston Astros 2000-2001; Detroit Tigers 2002; San Francisco Giants 2003; Phillies 2004
Professional Affiliations:  Detroit Tigers 1995-1998; Houston Astros 1999-2001; Detroit Tigers 2002; San Francisco Giants 2003; Phillies 2003-2004; Washington Nationals 2005

Phillies Career
17 games, 2 starts - 1-2, 5.03 ERA, 39 1/3 innings pitched, 16 walks, 24 strikeouts
Acquired:  Purchased from the San Francisco Giants, July 24, 2003.
Debut:  May 15, 2004 - Relieved Jim Crowell and pitched the ninth inning of a 16-5 win over the Rockies in Denver.  Allowed one walk.
Final Game:  September 24, 2004 - Relieved Amaury Telemaco in the fifth inning, pitching two innings and allowing a solo home run to the Expos' Termel Sledge.
Departed:  October 9, 2004 - Granted free agency, signed as a free agent with the Washington Nationals, January 11, 2005.

1996 Topps #244
 
1998 Upper Deck #581
 
2004 Choice Scranton/
Wilkes-Barre Red Barons #24
1 Powell Baseball Card in My Collection
2004 Choice Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons #24

Other Baseball Cards
First Mainstream Card:  1996 Topps #244
First Topps Base Card:  1996 Topps #244
Last Mainstream Card:  1998 Upper Deck #581
Other Notable Cards:  2003 Multi-Ad Fresno Grizzlies #19

Sources:  Baseball Reference and The Trading Card Database

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s
1 Kirk Bullinger
2 Chris Pritchett
3 Bryan Ward
4 Mark Holzemer
5 Turner Ward
6 P.J. Forbes
7 Matt Walbeck
8 Kelly Stinnett
9 Valerio de los Santos
10 Josh Hancock
11 Brian Powell

This is a continuing series looking at those players who spent time with the Phillies but possess no baseball card proof of their time in Philadelphia.  In some cases, the First and Last Mainstream cards listed above have been subjectively chosen if multiple cards were released in that year.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s - #10 Josh Hancock

#50
Joshua Morgan Hancock
Pitcher

Unlike teammate Valerio de los Santos, Josh Hancock did participate in the post-game ceremony following the final game at Veterans Stadium.  A September call-up, Hancock pitched in two games for the Phillies in 2003 and he'd appear in four more games with the team the following season.  Hancock was recalled from the Red Barons three separate times in 2004, making spot starts on May 22nd and June 3rd only to be sent back following both games.  He made two appearances in relief in late July when Ryan Madson landed on the disabled list.  In those six games over two seasons for the Phillies, Hancock went 0-1 with a 7.50 ERA, striking out 9 in 12 innings pitched.

In need of a strong bullpen arm for the stretch run, the Phillies sent Hancock and fellow prospect Anderson Machado to the Reds on July 30, 2004 for fellow Missing Links member Todd Jones.

Hancock was a key cog in the bullpen of the 2006 World Champion St. Louis Cardinals, appearing in 62 games and compiling a 4.09 ERA.  Tragically, an intoxicated Hancock was killed on April 29, 2007 at the age of 29 in a traffic accident.

Bats:  Left  Throws:  Right  Height:  6'3"  Weight:  217
Born:  April 11, 1978, Cleveland, MS
Died:  April 29, 2007, St. Louis, MO
Drafted:  Drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the 5th round of the amateur player draft, June 2, 1998.
Major League Teams:  Boston Red Sox 2002; Phillies 2003-2004; Cincinnati Reds 2004-2005; St. Louis Cardinals 2006-2007
Professional Affiliations:  Boston Red Sox 1998-2002; Phillies 2003-2004; Cincinnati Reds 2004-2005; St. Louis Cardinals 2006-2007

Phillies Career
6 games, 2 starts - 0-1, 7.50 ERA, 12 innings pitched, 3 walks, 9 strikeouts
Acquired:  Acquired from the Boston Red Sox for Jeremy Giambi, December 15, 2002.
Debut:  September 9, 2003 - Relieved Brandon Duckworth in the eighth inning of an eventual 18-5 win over the Braves.  Pitched an inning, allowing a run on two hits.
Final Game:  July 29, 2004 - Pitched a scoreless seventh inning against the Marlins, striking out two.
Departed:  July 30, 2004 - Traded with Anderson Machado to the Cincinnati Reds for Todd Jones and Brad Correll.

2003 Donruss #42
 
2003 Choice Scranton/
Wilkes-Barre Red Barons #7
2004 Choice Scranton/
Wilkes-Barre Red Barons #14
2006 Upper Deck #812
 
4 Hancock Baseball Cards in My Collection
2003 Donruss #42
2003 Fleer Tradition #444
2003 Choice Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons #7
2004 Choice Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons #14

Other Baseball Cards
First Mainstream Card:  2002 Upper Deck #538
First Topps Base Card:  N/A
Last Mainstream Card:  2006 Upper Deck #812
Other Notable Cards:  1999 Multi-Ad Augusta Greenjackets #12, 2003 Donruss Team Heroes #92, 2005 Topps Total #676

Sources:  Baseball Reference and The Trading Card Database

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s
1 Kirk Bullinger
2 Chris Pritchett
3 Bryan Ward
4 Mark Holzemer
5 Turner Ward
6 P.J. Forbes
7 Matt Walbeck
8 Kelly Stinnett
9 Valerio de los Santos
10 Josh Hancock

This is a continuing series looking at those players who spent time with the Phillies but possess no baseball card proof of their time in Philadelphia.  In some cases, the First and Last Mainstream cards listed above have been subjectively chosen if multiple cards were released in that year.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s - #9 Valerio de los Santos

#28
Valerio Lorenzo de los Santos
Relief Pitcher

Even though the Phillies were 13 games behind the Braves in the division on September 2nd, they were still in the Wild Card hunt, just a game behind the Marlins.  To bolster the bullpen down the stretch, lefty Valerio de los Santos was purchased from the Brewers.  He appeared in six games for the Phillies in September, but half of those outings resulted in runs being scored by the opponent.  He finished his Phillies career with a 9.00 ERA, earned over just four innings pitched.  By my unofficial observation at the time, he was one of two current Phillies pitchers (along with Jose Mesa) who didn't take the field on September 28, 2003 for the post-game closing ceremony of Veterans Stadium.

de los Santos pitched in parts of nine seasons in the Majors, finding the most success with the Brewers between 2000 and 2003.

Bats:  Left  Throws:  Left  Height:  6'2"  Weight:  225
Born:  October 6, 1972, Las Matas de Farfan, Dominican Republic
Signed:  Signed by the Milwaukee Brewers as an amateur free agent, January 26, 1993.
Major League Teams:  Milwaukee Brewers 1998-2003; Phillies 2003; Toronto Blue Jays 2004; Florida Marlins 2005; Colorado Rockies 2008
Professional Affiliations:  Milwaukee Brewers 1995-2003; Phillies 2003; Toronto Blue Jays 2004; Florida Marlins 2005; Chicago White Sox 2006; Sultanes de Monterrey (Mexico) 2007; Dorados de Chihuahua (Mexico) 2007; Colorado Rockies 2008; Vaqueros Laguna 2011 (Mexico); Long Island Ducks (Independent) 2011

Phillies Career
6 games, all in relief - 1-0, 9.00, 4 strikeouts, 3 walks in 4 innings pitched
Acquired:  Purchased from the Milwaukee Brewers, September 2, 2003.
Debut:  September 4, 2003 - Relieved Jose Mesa after he had blown a save in the ninth inning against the Mets, pitching 2/3 of an inning.  Earned the win when Mike Lieberthal hit a walk-off single to left to score Marlon Byrd.
Final Game:  September 25, 2003 - Relieved Randy Wolf in the fifth inning, pitching an inning and allowing a run on two hits to the Marlins.
Departed:  December 21, 2003 - Granted free agency, signed as a free agent with the Toronto Blue Jays, December 27, 2003.

1997 Bowman #319
2003 Topps Total #59
2003 Upper Deck 40-Man #419
2004 Topps Total #403
2 de los Santos Baseball Cards in My Collection
2003 Topps Total #59
2003 Upper Deck 40-Man #419

Other Baseball Cards
First Mainstream Card:  1997 Bowman #319
First Topps Base Card:  N/A
Last Mainstream Card:  2004 Topps Total #403
Other Notable Cards:  1999 Fleer Tradition #329, 2000 Pacific Omega #187, 2001 MLB Showdown First Edition #235

Sources:  Baseball Reference and The Trading Card Database

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s
1 Kirk Bullinger
2 Chris Pritchett
3 Bryan Ward
4 Mark Holzemer
5 Turner Ward
6 P.J. Forbes
7 Matt Walbeck
8 Kelly Stinnett
9 Valerio de los Santos

This is a continuing series looking at those players who spent time with the Phillies but possess no baseball card proof of their time in Philadelphia.  In some cases, the First and Last Mainstream cards listed above have been subjectively chosen if multiple cards were released in that year.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s - #8 Kelly Stinnett

#35
Kelly Lee Stinnett
Catcher

As we watched the closing ceremonies following the final game at Veterans Stadium on September 28, 2003, I thought it a nice touch that the current Phillies team opted to take part in the on-field introductions.  Kelly Stinnett entered the field after Rheal Cormier and the photo for this card is taken from that moment.  Stinnett was acquired from the Reds for Eric Valent right before the August 31st trade deadline as the Phils were looking for some catching depth behind Mike Lieberthal and Todd Pratt.  As it turned out, he was used mostly as a pinch-hitter in his seven games with the Phillies, seeing action as a catcher in a just a few innings in the September 9th game.

Stinnett enjoyed a 14-year career as a backup catcher with eight different teams, reaching a career high in games with 92 for the 1998 Diamondbacks.

Bats:  Right  Throws:  Right  Height:  5'11"  Weight:  195
Born:  February 14, 1970, Lawton, OK
Drafted:  Drafted by the Cleveland Indians in the 11th round of the 1989 amateur player draft.
Major League Teams:  New York Mets 1994-1995; Milwaukee Brewers 1996-1997; Arizona Diamondbacks 1998-2000; Cincinnati Reds 2001-2003; Phillies 2003; Kansas City Royals 2004; Arizona Diamondbacks 2005; New York Yankees 2006; New York Mets 2006; St. Louis Cardinals 2007
Professional Affiliations:  Cleveland Indians 1990-1993; New York Mets 1994-1995; Milwaukee Brewers 1996-1997; Arizona Diamondbacks 1998-2000; Cincinnati Reds 2001-2003; Phillies 2003; Kansas City Royals 2004; Arizona Diamondbacks 2005; New York Yankees 2006; New York Mets 2006; Los Angeles Dodgers 2007; St. Louis Cardinals 2007

Phillies Career
7 games - six as pinch-hitter, one at catcher, 3 for 7 (.429)
Acquired:  Acquired from the Cincinnati Reds for Eric Valent, August 31, 2003.
Debut:  September 1, 2003 - Pinch hit for Mike Williams in the sixth inning against the Red Sox, singling off Jeff Suppan.
Final Game:  September 28, 2003 - In the last game ever played at Veterans Stadium, pinch hit for Turk Wendell in the fifth and popped out to first against Greg Maddux.
Departed:  October 26, 2003 - Granted free agency.  Signed with the Kansas City Royals, December 19, 2003.

1995 Topps #71
 
2000 Topps #347
 
2003 Upper Deck
40-Man #735
2006 Upper Deck #719
 
1 Stinnett Baseball Card in My Collection
2003 Upper Deck 40-Man #735

Other Baseball Cards
First Mainstream Card:  1994 Pinnacle #538
First Topps Base Card:  1995 Topps #71
Last Mainstream Card:  2006 Upper Deck #719
Other Notable Cards:  1990 Star Waterloo Indians #20, 1998 Pacific Online #48, 1999 Fleer Tradition #524, 2000 Topps #347, 2001 Topps #644, 2002 Topps #381

Sources:  Baseball Reference and The Trading Card Database

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s
1 Kirk Bullinger
2 Chris Pritchett
3 Bryan Ward
4 Mark Holzemer
5 Turner Ward
6 P.J. Forbes
7 Matt Walbeck
8 Kelly Stinnett

This is a continuing series looking at those players who spent time with the Phillies but possess no baseball card proof of their time in Philadelphia.  In some cases, the First and Last Mainstream cards listed above have been subjectively chosen if multiple cards were released in that year.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s - #7 Matt Walbeck

#4
Matthew Lovick Walbeck
Pinch Hitter

Mike Lieberthal's season-ending knee injury, suffered on a pick-off play on May 12th, set in a motion a catcher merry-go-round throughout the Phillies system during the 2001 season.  Johnny Estrada was recalled from the Red Barons and became the team's starting catcher with Gary Bennett serving as his back-up.  The Red Barons, in need of a strong catcher, purchased Matt Walbeck from the Reds on July 11th.  Walbeck was a September call-up when rosters expanded, but Estrada and Todd Pratt (acquired from the Mets on July 23rd for Bennett) got all of the playing time behind the plate.

Walbeck received one at-bat with the Phillies, pinch-hitting and singling for Vicente Padilla in the ninth inning in a game against the Marlins on September 30th.  A free agent following the season, he'd finish up his 11-year big league career playing two seasons with the Tigers.

Bats:  Both  Throws:  Right  Height:  5'11"  Weight:  195
Born:  October 2, 1969, Sacramento, CA
Drafted:  Drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the 8th round of the 1987 amateur player draft.
Major League Teams:  Chicago Cubs 1993; Minnesota Twins 1994-1996; Detroit Tigers 1997; Anaheim Angels 1998-2000; Phillies 2001; Detroit Tigers 2002-2003
Professional Affiliations:  Chicago Cubs 1987-1993; Minnesota Twins 1994-1996; Detroit Tigers 1997; Anaheim Angels 1998-2000; Cincinnati Reds 2001; Phillies 2001; Detroit Tigers 2002-2003

Phillies Career
1 game - Singled in his lone at-bat with the Phillies, 1.000 batting average
Acquired:  Purchased from the Cincinnati Reds, July 11, 2001.
Debut:  September 30, 2001 - Pinch hit for Vicente Padilla, singling to right off the Marlins' Antonio Alfonseca.
Final Game:  September 30, 2001
Departed:  October 8, 2001 - Granted free agency, signed as a free agent with the San Diego Padres, January 2, 2002.

1993 Topps #812
1995 Topps #471
2001 Topps #309
2004 Upper Deck #111
1 Walbeck Baseball Card in My Collection
2001 Topps #309

Other Baseball Cards
First Mainstream Card:  1993 Upper Deck #509
First Topps Base Card:  1993 Topps #812
Last Mainstream Card:  2004 Upper Deck #111
Other Notable Cards:  1987 ProCards #2739, 1994 Topps Traded #69T, 1995 Topps #471, 1996 Fleer #179, 1999 Topps #136, 2000 Topps #162, 2003 Topps Total #315

Sources:  Baseball Reference and The Trading Card Database

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s
1 Kirk Bullinger
2 Chris Pritchett
3 Bryan Ward
4 Mark Holzemer
5 Turner Ward
6 P.J. Forbes
7 Matt Walbeck

This is a continuing series looking at those players who spent time with the Phillies but possess no baseball card proof of their time in Philadelphia.  In some cases, the First and Last Mainstream cards listed above have been subjectively chosen if multiple cards were released in that year.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s - #6 P.J. Forbes

#29
Patrick Joseph Forbes
Second Base

P.J. Forbes was signed by the Phillies as a minor league free agent prior to the 2000 season, spending that entire year with the Triple A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons.  It looked as if he'd also spend the entire 2001 season with the Red Barons without a call-up when the Phillies purchased his contract on September 17th.  That day was an emotional day for the country and the baseball world as it marked the return of baseball following the September 11th terrorist attacks.  Forbes and his teammates lined up for the pre-game ceremony and the National Anthem and he appears on the United We Stand subset card found within the 2002 Topps set, in between teammates Eddie Oropesa and David Coggin.

Forbes appeared in 3 games for the Phillies at the end of the 2001 season and then spent the entire 2002 season back with the Red Barons.  After his playing days, Forbes came back to manage in the Phillies' system, leading the Lakewood BlueClaws (2004-05) and the Reading Phillies (2006-08).

Bats:  Right  Throws:  Right  Height:  5'10"  Weight:  160
Born:  September 22, 1967, Pittsburg, KS
Drafted:  Drafted by the California Angels in the 20th round of the 1990 amateur player draft.
Major League Teams:  Baltimore Orioles 1998; Phillies 2001
Professional Affiliations:  California Angels 1990-1996; Baltimore Orioles 1997-1998, 1999; Texas Rangers 1999; Phillies 2000-2002

Phillies Career
3 games - two as pinch-hitter, one at second base, 2 for 7 (.286) with an RBI
Acquired:  Signed as a minor league free agent formerly with the Baltimore Orioles organization, November 2, 1999.
Debut:  September 30, 2001 - Pinch hit for Jimmy Rollins in the ninth inning, grounding into a force out against the Marlins' Antonio Alfonseca.  Marlon Anderson scored on the play.
Final Game:  October 7, 2001 - Started at second base in the final game of the season, going 2 for 5 with two singles.
Departed:  October 15, 2002 - Granted free agency.

2000 Q Cards Scranton/
Wilkes-Barre Red Barons #9
2001 Choice Scranton/
Wilkes-Barre Red Barons #8
2004 Choice Lakewood
BlueClaws #7
2008 Multi-Ad Reading
Phillies #26
8 Forbes Baseball Cards in My Collection
2000 Q Cards Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons #9
2001 Choice Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons #8
2002 Choice Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons #5
2004 Choice Lakewood BlueClaws #7
2005 Choice Lakewood BlueClaws #11
2006 Multi-Ad Reading Phillies #25
2007 Multi-Ad Reading Phillies #25
2008 Multi-Ad Reading Phillies #26

Other Baseball Cards
First Mainstream Card:  N/A
First Topps Base Card:  N/A*
Last Mainstream Card:  N/A
Other Notable Cards:  1990 ProCards #3320, 1994 Fleer/ProCards #1869, 2012 Grandstand Altoona Curve #15

*Technically, 2002 Topps #359 could be listed here.

Sources:  Baseball Reference and The Trading Card Database

Phillies Missing Links of the 2000s
1 Kirk Bullinger
2 Chris Pritchett
3 Bryan Ward
4 Mark Holzemer
5 Turner Ward
6 P.J. Forbes

This is a continuing series looking at those players who spent time with the Phillies but possess no baseball card proof of their time in Philadelphia.  In some cases, the First and Last Mainstream cards listed above have been subjectively chosen if multiple cards were released in that year.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Phillies Name Pedro Guerrero Assistant Hitting Coach

1986 Sportflics #148
I have two Pedro Guerrero baseball cards in my Phillies collection.  This lenticular card from the 1986 Sportflics set featuring Guerrero, Mike Schmidt and Darrel Porter is one of those cards.  That's Guerrero's leg poking through behind Schmidt.  The former slugger also appears on the back of Pete Rose's card from the 1983 Topps Foldouts set.

The Phillies' new assistant hitting coach, also named Pedro Guerrero, apparently is no relation to the former big leaguer who was a five-time All-Star and played for 15 seasons with the Dodgers and Cardinals.  The Phillies' Pedro Guerrero is a 28-year-old who played eight seasons in the Dodgers' minor league organization and served as their Rookie-level bench coach for the Ogden Raptors the past two seasons.  He worked with new Phillies manager Gabe Kapler during Kapler's time with the Dodgers' organization.  The younger Guerrero's only baseball card appearances to date can be found within Dodgers' minor league team sets.

Guerrero's hiring leaves just two vacant coaching spots on the Phillies' staff - bench coach and first base coach.  It would appear as if Rick Kranitz will serve as the team's pitching coach in 2018, although the team has yet to make this official.

To be perfectly honest, I'm having a tough time getting even remotely excited about the Phillies' field staff hirings this offseason.  The more I think about the Kapler hiring, the more I wish Pete Mackanin was coming back next season.  Only time will tell if these appointments are genius or lunacy.

And on that note . . . Happy Thanksgiving!