Daily Archives: December 13, 2009

I Finally Got My 1966 Topps Fergie Jenkins Rookie Card – YIPPEE!!!!

I Finally Got My 1966 Topps Fergie Jenkins Rookie Card – YIPPEE!!!!

I thought that this was a perfect way to end ‘Fergie Jenkins Day’ at 30-YOC!!!

I got this card two weeks ago, and have to say that this is the best card I have bought since my return to the hobby.  When I declared my intent to become a Fergie Jenkins collector more than a year ago I never thought I would spend the money needed to secure one of these great rookie cards.  Well, more than a year later, and displaying a huge amount of patience I am not accustomed to, I have finally picked up one of these 1966 Topps treasures for a price that I would call a bargain!!!

I am very happy to finally own this card.  I have devoted quite a bit of time to learning more about Fergie Jenkins and his career and it’s nice to be able to honor him, on his birthday, by showing off the newest and greatest card in my Fergie Jenkins collection!!!

Happy Birthday Mr. Jenkins!!!

And if you’re counting at home, I am just 1 card away from completing this collection.  The 1969 Topps base card stands between me and the finish line.

Fergie Jenkins And The Hall Of Fame Class Of 1991

Fergie Jenkins was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1991.  Sitting alongside Rod Carew and Gaylord Perry, Jenkins was a very proud man as he was the first ever Canadian-born player elected into Cooperstown.

Jenkins had a marvelous 19-year career in which he compiled a 284-226 record.  He started 594 games in his career and went the distance in 267 of them – AMAZING!!!  Fergie struck out 3,192 batters and walked just 997.  His career ERA is a solid 3.34.  Sadly, Fergie Jenkins never made a post-season appearance.

Fergie Jenkins And His 1971 Cy Young Award

Fergie Jenkins And His 1971 Cy Young Award

In today’s game if a pitcher wins 20 games he is almost a shoe-in for the Cy Young award.  But back in the 1970’s, that was not the case.  While still a rare feat four decades ago, the 20-game winner has all but vanished in the 2000’s…

In 1971 Fergie Jenkins won the Cy Young award.  In that campaign, Fergie had a record of 24-13 while starting 39 times.  And of those 39 starts, he completed an amazing 30 games.  He compiled a 2.77 ERA and struck out 263 batters in 325 innings pitched.

Jenkins finished in the Top 3 three other times during his magnificent career.  Had it not been for the amazing careers of Bob Gibson, Steve Carlton, and Jim ‘Catfish’ Hunter, Fergie may have been a multiple time winner…  We can dream, can’t we??

Fergie Jenkins And His Seven 20-Win Seasons

When the name Ferguson Jenkins is mentioned, 1 of the very first things that someone will bring up is his incredible streak of six seasons in which he tallied 20 or more wins.

This is a remarkable feat, and one worthy of praise and honor!!!  It can be expanded to say ‘In seven out of 8…’ but I too agree that ‘Six straight’ sounds a little better.

Here are the numbers:

Year Wins Starts Complete Games
1967 20 38 20
1968 20 40 20
1969 21 42 23
1970 22 40 24
1971 24 39 40
1972 20 36 23
Totals 127 235 150

 

Pretty nice huh??  While winning more than half of the games he started for a less than stellar Cubs team, it may be just as impressive that Fergie completed nearly 64% of the those contests.

Oh, and in case you were wondering, Fergie won just 14 games in 1973.  It was his final season during his first stint with the Cubs.  But he did follow-up with a 25-win debut with the Texas Rangers in 1974!!

For A Pitcher, Fergie Jenkins Was One Heck Of A Hitter!!!

The numbers don’t lie, Fergie Jenkins was a very good hitter!!

Before Fergie made the commitment to pitching during his youth, he was an outstanding hitter.  And since he played in the National League, he got to get his hacks in every few days. 

Although his career batting average is just .165, that is much higher than what the other guys in the NL were hitting at the time.  And even in today’s game, hitting .165 would be very competitive for the top spot in baseball.

Along with his .165 average, Fergie amassed 148 career hits, including 27 doubles, 6 triples, and 13 home runs.  He helped his cause quite a bit too as he scored 54 runs and collected 85 RBI.

Atta boy Fergie!!! 

Fergie Jenkins Is Just 1 Of 2 Major League Pitchers To…

… strikeout more than 3,000 batters while walking less than 1,000.

A true master craftsman, Fergie Jenkins had the very rare ability to dominate hitters while also maintaining supreme control of his pitches.

For his career, Fergie struck out 3,192 batters and walked just 997.  Good for a 3.20 K:walk ratio, he will go down as one of the most precise and accurate pitchers that the game has ever witnessed.

And the other guy to do it??  None other than former Cubs pitcher and future Hall of Famer Greg Maddux.  Maddux retired with 3,371 and 999 respectively.

Fergie Jenkins Has One Of The Best Signatures In Baseball!!!

I am an autograph collector.  And while still not an expert on the topic, I would hope that people value my opinion on the matter since they know what I have in my collection.

With all of that being said, I think it is a very fair statement to say that Fergie Jenkins has a great looking autograph!!

I have learned a lot about Mr. Jenkins after reading 2 of his more recent biographies.  He is and has been very conscious of the autograph collector and takes great pride in providing a quality signature.  He claims to have signed over 2 millions autographs over his lifetime, one million during his playing days, and one million after his retirement from the sport.

I think what I like most about his signature is that it has remained extremely consistent throughout his career.  It looks great each and every time….

Fergie Jenkins Was A 3-time All-Star

I really wanted to insert the word ‘just’ between Was and A…

Incredibly, a player that won 20 or more games 7 times during his career was chosen as an All-star just 3 times.

In today’s game 20 wins puts you into a very rare and elite class.  Cy Young awards will be won, All-star selections will be obvious, and Hall of Fame talk will begin.

But back in the 1960’s and 1970’s, this was not the case.  While the 20-game winner was still held in high regard, it was not as rare of a feat as it is now 30+ years later.  Back then, teams employed a 4-man rotation and if healthy for the entire season, a guy could start 35-40 games a year.  All of a sudden winning half of your games was not that big of a deal.

Jenkins made the All-star team in 1967, 1971, and 1972 – all with the Chicago Cubs.  Based solely on his season-ending numbers, it can and should be argued that he should have had 3-4 more appearances in the mid-summer classic.

Fergie Jenkins & The Harlem Globetrotters…

In his youth, Fergie Jenkins was a very talented athlete.  Prior to making a full-time commitment to baseball, he excelled at basketball, track, and ice hockey.

Having gained a celebrity-esque status in his hometown and around Canada once he became a major league baseball player, the Harlem Globetrotters came calling.  In an attempt to capitalize on his athletic abilities and soaring popularity, he was asked to participate in a short tour around Canada.

Fan support and ticket sales were so strong that his brief reign as a Globetrotter player lasted more than 2 years and 80+ games.

And now, some 40+ years later you can still find old Globetrotter teammates attending some of the charitable events hosted by their former player.

Happy Birthday Fergie Jenkins!!!

Fergie Jenkins turns 66 years old today.

It has become a tradition here ar ’30-YOC’ to celebrate my favorite players and their birthdays by dedicating a whole day full of posts in their honor.

I am thrilled to do this for Fergie Jenkins.  He is my favorite pitcher of all-time, and I look forward to bringing you several of his incredible career achievements throughout the day.

Happy Birthday Mr. Jenkins!!!