14 December 2014

andy messersmith was a dodger double dipper

i mentioned earlier today that andy messersmith would get a dodger double dipper post of his very own.  i wasn't joking.

[this is the eighty-ninth installment in the double dippers posts.  here are the previous posts - brett butler, omar daaleric young, nick willhitechris gwynn, mickey hatcherdave anderson, don zimmerrafael landestoy, dave hansen, jose vizcaino, hideo nomo, greg maddux, mike madduxjon garland, chan ho parkvicente romogene mauch, denny lewallyn, von joshua, joe moellerdioner navarro, rudy seanez, bart shirleyrandy wolf, ismael valdes, bobby castillo, mike devereaux, pete richert, jay johnstone, jesse orosco, lee lacy, giovanni carrara, jeff weaverted sizemore,  orel hershisertom goodwinjoe fergusoneddie murraymatt lukeken mcmullen, tim wallach, jerry grotedon suttonralph branca, todd hundley, elmer dessensguillermo motajoe beckwithjamie hoffmannbabe hermanjoe medwickjuan castroron perranoskiclyde kingpaul wanerhughie jenningsron negray, broadway aleck smithgeorge smith, johnny cooney, jim faireyfrenchy bordagaraydoc casey, waite hoytluis olmoclyde sukeforthwillie keeler,  harry howellgermany smithjohnny allenmarv rackleybobo newsom, maury wills, dazzy vance, ray hayworthzack taylorjohn croninart herringbrian falkenborgbill reidy, john andersonvito tamulis, wally hood, jim bruske, bill dahlen, patsy donovanjamey wright, and watty clark.]

messersmith first joined the dodgers in 1973 after he was traded by the angels in the frank robinson deal.  i am sure the dodgers coveted his 2.78 era over the five seasons he pitched for the angels, and they weren't disappointed, as he had a 2.67 era in his first four years with the club, which included his fantastic 1974 season in which he went 20-6 and had an era of 2.59.  messersmith started the nl all-star game in 1974, as well as game 2 of the nlcs against the pirates which he won.  he also started games 1 and 4 of the world series, but took the loss in each.  

after a season like that, messersmith was looking for a raise, but when he tried to negotiate a contract for the 1975 season, things didn't go well.  here's his hostess card from 1975, by the way,
complete with the rare sighting of batting gloves on a pitcher's throwing hand.  he decided to pitch without a contract while his grievance against the reserve clause was being resolved.  he wound up winning 19 games in 1975 while posting an era of 2.29 and earning his second straight gold glove.  the baseball arbitrator ruled in his favor (the owners fired the arbitrator the following day), and messersmith signed a free agent deal with the braves.

he moved on to the yankees after the 1977 season, as his 1978 o-pee-chee card attests
but was re-signed by the dodgers when he hit the market again after the 1978 season.  it even says so on his 1979 o-pee-chee card
i really wish there had been a traded set in the late 1970's and 1980 so that there could have been more cards of players like messersmith.  here's a 1979 topps card that should have been that i made
to help ease my pain.

the second time around was not as successful for messersmith as he was 2-4 in 11 starts with a 4.91 era when the dodgers released him in early june.  he retired soon after, with a 2.86 career era which puts him between jim palmer and tom seaver, but well within the top 10 for starting pitchers after 1920.

here's another card i made for messersmith - it's his 1980 topps card that should have been
which serves as a final tribute with his entire career stats on the back.
i don't have any other double dippers lined up, so this may be the end of the line for these posts, at least until the dodgers reacquire matt kemp a few years from now for a torii hunter-esque swan song.  still, don't be surprised if i uncover some other heretofore unknown to me franchise double dipper in the 1990 target dodgers set...

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