Okay, I really need to get back to this. I laid out the skeleton of this post about two weeks ago, but have been putting off doin the research and write-up. So, without much further ado, here is part 2 of my examination of random, interesting card back cartoons from 1970 Topps.
David Nelson (#112) - Dave's hobby is saving clippings of his favorite athletes
Sparky Lyle (#116) - Sparky once struck out 31 men in a 17 inning game
This feat was accomplished in American Legion ball in his hometown of DuBois, PA and it was the thing that caught the attention of a major league scout, George Staller of the Baltimore Orioles, who signed him to a contract. It should be noted that Sparky only pitched in 14 of those 17 innings and manned frist base the other three, There wasn't much primary source information I could find. The local newspaper, The Courier Express, is indexed at newspapers.com, but there is a complete gap in the records between 1946 and 1969. By 1969, he was on his third major leagues season with the Red Sox.
Joe Coleman (#127) - Joe has particular success vs. the White Sox
So, I downloaded his entire career from Baseball Reference and did some analysis of his pre-1970 statistics. Using the traditional pitching statistic of ERA, I calculated Coleman's results for each team and overall, then sorted.
As you can see, Coleman was better against the White Sox than his overall average against the league. However, it was only marginally better than average and certainly worse than his performance against a number of other teams. So, my last effort to understand this was to look at Win Percentage Added (WPA.) I understand WPA conceptually, though I don't know how it is calculated. In general it looks at an individual players contribution to a game. A positive number means they contributed towards a win (even though the game result may not have been a win.)A negative number means they were a negative influence on the game outcome. In order to control for the fact that the amount of playing time versus each team. I looked at average WPA per appearance.
So, my impression is that, overall, Coleman was a neutral contributor to the Senators. Interestingly, based on this metric, he wasn't particularly successful against the White Sox. In fact, it was probably more accurate to say (accounting for all three above metrics) that he has particular success against the Angels, Athletics, and Tigers.
Scheinblum first pro homerun was with the Burlington Indians of the A level Carolina League in 1964. The homerun referenced was in a game on June 14 against the Greensboro Yankees. It was hit off of pitcher Joe Riccardo. Riccardo never made it out of A ball, with the 1965 season being his last.
What I am Listening to: Walking in Memphis by Marc Cohn