Saturday, July 16, 2016

Final Card - Ed Roebuck

Ed Roebuck pitched in 460 games during his 11 year career, but only 1 as a starting pitcher. He pitched 7 ½ seasons with the Dodgers, and parts of 2 seasons with the Senators before wrapping up his career with 2-plus seasons with the Phillies. Philadelphia released him after the 1965 season, then resigned him early in 1966, but too late for Topps to include him in the 1966 set.

Roebuck was signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1949 and played 6 seasons in the minors, including the Dodgers’ AAA Montreal Royals from 1952-54, where some of his teammates were Tommy Lasorda, Jim Gilliam, Johnny Podres, Don Hoak, and Roberto Clemente. (Yes, Clemente once was a Dodgers’ farmhand, who the Pirates selected in the Rule 5 draft!) 

Roebuck made his major-league debut with Brooklyn in 1955, and led the staff with 12 saves as a 23-year-old rookie. He was a key member of their bullpen for the next 4 seasons, and pitched in the ’55 and ’56 World Series.

After spending the 1959 season in triple-A, he returned to the Dodgers the following year and pitched 116 innings over 58 games, compiling an 8-3 record. He was limited to 5 games in 1961, but bounced back in ’62 with another good season: a 10-2 record in 64 games (119 innings).

In July 1963 he was traded to the Senators for infielder Marv Breeding. Ed only lasted in Washington until the following April, when the Phillies purchased his contract to bolster their bullpen, which featured ace Jack Baldschun along with 18-year-old rookie Rick Wise, aging veterans Bobby Shantz and Johnny Klippstein, and organizational schmoes John Boozer and Dallas Green.

Roebuck compiled a 5-3 record with a 2.21 ERA and notched 12 saves in 1964, 2nd behind Baldschun's 21 saves. In 1965 Ed slipped to last-man-in-the-bullpen, behind Baldschun, newcomers Gary Wagner and Bo Belinsky, and ex-starter Art Mahaffey.

Ed was released after the 1965 season, but resigned with the Phils early in the 1966 season. After 6 games (totaling 6 innings) between mid-June and early-July the Phillies released him again, ending his major-league career. He played the remainder of '66 and 1967 with the Phillies' AAA team in San Diego.

After his playing career, Roebuck was a scout for the Dodgers, Phillies, Braves, Reds, Pirates, and Red Sox.

With this post, I have now featured every player (having a baseball card) who suited up for the Phillies between 1966 and 1970. 

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