Tuesday, November 23, 2021

RIP - Jerry Johnson

Jerry Johnson, who pitched for the Phillies, Giants, and others from 1968-77, passed away on November 15, 2021 at age 77.
Johnson debuted in mid-1968 with the Phillies, then was included in the Dick Allen for Curt Flood trade after the 1969 season. After only 7 games, the Cardinals dealt him to the Giants. 
His best season was 1971, when he posted a 12-9 record for the Giants, and surprisingly (to me anyway) finished 6th in the Cy Young voting. Johnson subsequently pitched for the Indians, Astros, Padres, and Blue Jays.  

Monday, November 15, 2021

RIP - Billy Moran

Billy Moran, the Los Angeles Angels' 2nd baseman for their first few seasons, passed away on October 21, 2021 at age 87.
Moran made his debut with the Indians in 1958, playing 115 games as the backup 2B-SS. He also played a handful of games for the Tribe in 1959, before settling back in the minors until his June 1961 trade to the expansion Angels. 
Moran was the regular 2nd baseman for the rest of '61, and started 150+ games there in each of '62 and '63. He was the AL's starting 2nd baseman in both All-Star games in 1962. 
With the arrival of Bobby Knoop in 1964, Moran moved over to 3rd base for the first half, then returned to the Indians in June, where he backed up 3rd baseman Max Alvis. He played a few games for Cleveland in 1965 but spent most of the year in triple-A. 

Wednesday, November 10, 2021

RIP - Ray Fosse

Ray Fosse, an Indians' and Athletics' catcher in the 1970s, passed away on October 13, 2021 at age 74.
Fosse was the Indians' starting catcher from 1970-72. Traded to the Athletics for Dave Duncan after the 1972 season, he was Oakland's regular catcher in 1973 and for the first 2 months of 1974, before losing his job to Gene Tenace. 
He returned to the Tribe in a limited role for 1976-77. Fosse signed on with the Brewers for 1978, but missed the entire season with leg injuries. He retired after only playing a handful of games in 1979. 

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

RIP - Rich Barry

Rich Barry, the long-time Yankees' farmhand who finally got a cup of coffee with the Phillies in 1969, passed away on October 9, 2021 at age 81.
Barry (even scarcely remembered among old-school Phillies' fans) played in the Yankees' farm system from 1958 to 1965, often hitting over 20 homers in a season. Still, he could not break in with their big club. 
Acquired by the Phillies before the 1966 season, he played for that organization from 1966-69 (the last 3 seasons in triple-A) before finally making his major-league debut at age 28 on July 4th, 1969. After playing 20 games (5 starts), his major-league career was over. 
Barry played the next 3 seasons for the triple-A clubs of the Angels, Padres, and Braves before retiring. He finished with 280 homers in the minors, topping 20 homers 7 times.