Wednesday, August 6, 2008

#591 Doug Drabek

Why this card is awesome: Because behind Drabek we've got a middle infielder in the background, and behind that guy we've got some random dude carrying a white bag across the outfield. Makes perfect sense.

Interestingly, that infielder is probably 2B Johnny Ray, who was with the Pirates for most of 1987 before getting traded to the Angels. On Ray's own card from this set, he's wearing his Angels uniform (clearly not airbrushed) making him the only example I can think of for a player appearing in the base 1988 Topps set in two different team uniforms.

Cool stat: Drabek is another guy like Tom Browning and Bob Forsch who was pretty damn average but is remembered better due to a couple of specific good performances. Firstly, Drabek won 22 games while losing only 6 in 1990 and won a Cy Young. That was, by far, his best year in the majors. Also, he pitched very well for the Pirates in the postseason, despite the Pirates losing all 3 LCS series he appeared in. In the 1992 NLCS, he started 3 games and lost all 3 even though he gave up only 7 runs in those 3 games.

Andres Galarraga (6) and Darryl Strawberry (5) owned Drabek as the leading HR hitters against him.


Cannonball said...

I think that Drabek was a little better than the other guys whom you described as average. Early in his career, he was pretty comfortably above average, but his well-below-average performance in the final few years of his career kind of evened things out. Forsch and Browning were consistently closer to average throughout their careers, and didn't have seasons as valuable as some of Drabek's, like his Cy Young season in 1990. I think that Drabek did more to help his teams with his big seasons than those other guys ever did, but, in fairness, they didn't have stinkers as bad as Drabek's final few seasons.

Luke said...

he and bob walk are still two of my favorite bucs hurlers