Monday, October 20, 2008

1981 Fleer Team by Team Tribute: Royals

The Royals lost to the Phils in the 1980 World Series. They would win it all in 1985 and then return to expansion team status, where they remain today.

Hal McRae

McRae's position is listed as "Double Threat." The card back tells us that he played OF and DH. Actually he only played 9 games in left in 1980 so there must be some other reason for the moniker. Maybe it foreshadowed his ability to manage as well as play baseball. He once bloodied a reporter during an office phone-throwing tirade. I would be angry too if my only chance to manage was with the Royals and the early Tampa Bay Rays. Whatever they meant, McRae was a good player for a lot of years.

Jeff Twitty

Twitty only played 1 season in the Major Leagues. He was unremarkable. I noticed that there were stands beyond the outfield wall and I wondered in what stadium Twitty was posing. Luckily Rich Gale was included in the 1981 Fleer set.

Rich Gale

Exhibition Stadium! Thanks Fleer, for answering my question. Exhibition Stadium, known as "The Mistake by the Lake," was originally the home of the Toronto Argonauts of the CFL. It has since been demolished and replaced with a soccer facility. Gale pitched in the Major Leagues, in Japan, and in the Senior Pro Baseball League. His last baseball job was AAA Isotopes Pitching Coach.

Little Known 1980 Royals Trivia: Ken Phelps, slugger extroidinaire, made his Major League debut for the Royals in 1980. He went 0-4 in 3 games. He would hit 123 career HRs while never amassing 400 ABs in a single season.

2 comments:

night owl said...

I believe McRae was listed as a "Double threat" because of the number of doubles he had in his career. He had 54 doubles in one season and over 30 in a bunch of others.

MMayes said...

He was also a threat to any second baseman trying to turn a double play. Just ask Willie Randolph, once he picked himself out of the left field wall.