James Lester Kern
Over 30 years ago when I read in the transaction column of our newspaper that the Phillies hadJim Kern, I knew exactly what Kern looked like thanks to his many fantastic baseball cards. Kern had been a three-time All-Star with the Indians and Rangers in the late 1970s, and I had long admired his colorful baseball cards, some featuring him with a semi-maniacal grin.
Kern was signed by the Phillies on June 3rd, the day after they placed Tug McGraw on the 21-day disabled list with shoulder soreness. The hirsute righty reliever had been unemployed since being released by the White Sox on March 1st.
With the Phillies, Kern appeared in eight games, allowing 15 earned runs on 20 hits and 11 walks in 13 1/3 innings for a 10.13 ERA. If you remove his dreadful first appearance (see box score), his Phillies stats become slightly more respectable - 6.57 ERA, 13 hits and 9 runs in 12 1/3 innings. When McGraw was activated from the disabled list on July 27th, the Phis released Kern.
Bats: Right Throws: Right Height: 6'5" Weight: 185
Born: March 15, 1949, Gladwin, MI
Signed: Signed by the Cleveland Indians as an amateur free agent, September 4, 1967
Major League Teams: Clevelad Indians 1974-1978, Texas Rangers 1979-1981, Cincinnati Reds 1982, Chicago White Sox 1982-1983, Phillies 1984, Milwaukee Brewers 1984-1985, Cleveland Indians 1986
Professional Affiliations: Clevelad Indians 1968-1978, Texas Rangers 1979-1981, Cincinnati Reds 1982, Chicago White Sox 1982-1983, Phillies 1984, Milwaukee Brewers 1984-1985, Cleveland Indians 1986
8 games, 0-1, 10.13 ERA in 13 1/3 innings
Acquired: Signed as a free agent formerly with the Chicago White Sox, June 3, 1984
Debut: June 10, 1984 - Entered in the 12th inning of a 5-5 game against the Pirates and allowed 7 runs on 7 hits in the loss
Final Game: July 20, 1984
Departed: Released, July 27, 1984, and signed with the Milwaukee Brewers on August 8, 1984
First Card: N/A
Last Card: N/A
Other Baseball Cards
First Mainstream Card: 1975 Topps #621 (with John Denny, Rawley Eastwick and Juan Veintidos)
First Topps Base Card: 1975 Topps #621
Last Mainstream Card: 1983 Topps #772
Other Notable Cards: 1979 Topps #573, 1981 Topps #197, 1982 Donruss #89, 1982 Topps #463
Sources: Thanks to Friend O' the Blog Steve F. for the photo of Kern from a 1984 Phillies program! Baseball Reference and The Trading Card Database
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. I will make my way through the decade of the 1980s first and then work my way forward. In some cases, the First and Last Mainstream cards listed above have been subjectively chosen if multiple cards were released in that year.