Monday, June 30, 2014

Only the Nose Knows

Noses.  They come in all shapes and sizes.  Big, small, long, short, beautiful, cute, aquiline … And really, really ugly – like the ones in this post …


Poor Ron.  This is the kind of guy who the action shot was made for.  

Ron Woods was one of those Yankees who was unfortunate enough to be on the team during the late 60s and early 70s – i.e., back when they were terrible.  For some reason, I really liked those teams, and can name many of their “stars” right off the top of my head – Horace Clarke, Roy White, Mel Stottlemyre, Bobby Murcer, Danny Cater, Fritz Peterson …

Ron was actually up with the Yankees for only two and a half years. He also played three and a half with the Expos and had a cup of coffee with the Tigers. Overall, it was six years, 1200-some at bats, 26 homers, and a .233 average.

Great zombie stare, by the way.

See what I mean?

And, no, Ron did not play the drums for the Rolling Stones in the offseason.

Jim’s giving it his best Elvis sneer.  Hate to say it, but it’s just not working.  Next year, try the action shot, Jim.

Jim is usually referred to as Jim Ray Hart. That’s so we don’t confuse him with St. Louis Cardinals quarterback Jim Hart. Yeah, I know, happens to me all the time …

As a third baseman, Jim Ray Hart was a pretty decent hitter. Over 12 years, he totaled not quite 4,000 at bats, 170 dingers, almost 600 RBIs, and a decent .278 average. He was also a one-time All Star, came in second in RoY voting, and once hit for the cycle. 

He also led the whole league in errors one year. Jim Ray also once owned up that he didn’t enjoy the hot corner that much, noting that the batters were “just too damn close.” He would have made a perfect DH. Unfortunately, he didn’t make it over to the AL until injuries and fast living had pretty much done him in.

Nothing like a little Bozo hair to bring attention to the ol’ schnozzola.

It’s hard to believe, but Jason Thompson was once one of my favorites. Let me explain …

At the time, I was going to grad school in Pittsburgh. It was the mid ‘80s, and the Buccos were terrible. I can name most of their “stars” off the top of my head as well – Jason, Johnny Ray, Rick Rhoden, Marvell Wynne, Sammy Khalifa, Sixto Lezcano, Trench Davis, Bob Kipper, Doug Frobel … You know, those guys.

Well, Jason fit right in. He did 31 hit homers one year with the Bucs (and make the All Star squad). Otherwise, though, he couldn’t break 20 (not something you want your first baseman and cleanup hitter to do). 

Overall, though, he wasn’t too bad. Over his short 11 years, he totaled almost 5,000 at bats, hit over 200 homers, knocked in not quite 800 runs, and made the All Star team no less than three times. He was a pretty decent first baseman as well.

Jason retired to the Detroit area, where he runs a baseball academy.

It’s like a giant squid. But it’s nothing like this guy’s giant squid.

Roger Metzger’s Wikipedia entry pretty much says it all: “A light-hitting shortstop, he was known for his strong defense and good running speed.” As for the first part, how about a .231 average? Second part? How about a Gold Glove in ’73? The last bit? Would leading the league in triples for two years do it for you?

Roger may, however, be most famous for the way he ended his career. In particular, he lost the tips of four fingers in a table saw accident. Yup, that would do it.

Most guys have a little too much schnozz.  Jerry, on the other hand, had a little too little.

Jerry Royster was in the bigs for 16 years, mostly as a super-sub. Indeed, he played every position but first, catcher, and pitcher. His career .249 and 40 home runs also speak more to his abilities in the field (not necessarily to those in the batter’s box). After hanging up his spikes, Jerry was a minor league manager, major league coach, major league manager (53-94), and a manager in South Korea as well. 

Next time, nix the profile shot, Jerry!

* - author has this card

More noses, from an earlier era, right here.

1 comment:

  1. Re: Ron Woods' action photo:

    "And how about that Marla Hooch?!"