31 January 2011

rafael landestoy, double dipper

rafael landestoy began his career with the dodgers as an amatuer free agent in 1972.  he finally cracked the big league roster in 1977 when he appeared in 15 late season games.  he even made an appearance in the 1977 world series against the yankees, pinch running for steve yeager in the top of the 9th inning of game 1.  he was stranded on second and then replaced in the lineup defensively by jerry grote.

  here he is on a 1978 sspc card documenting his early dodger days:
in his time with the big club in 1977, landestoy hit .278 with 5 singles and two stolen bases.  he spent time at second and short in the field, while making a few other appearances as a pinch runner.  landestoy was back in the minors for the start of the 1978 season, and then was traded in july to houston in the deal that would make joe ferguson a dodger double dipper.

sporting the astros' rainbow unis, landestoy (seen here on his 1981 topps card)
became their primary second baseman and had pretty solid years in 1979 and 1980.  he set career highs in '79 with 30 rbi and a .270 average in 129 games, then set career marks in 1980 with 149 games, 97 hits and 23 steals.  he made his second postseason appearance, this time in the 1980 nlcs against the phillies.  during the 1981 season, landestoy was traded again, this time to the reds.  in his 3+ seasons with the astros, landestoy hit an even .250 in 372 games and 967 at bats.  with the reds, he hit just .181 in 92 games and 127 at bats spread over 2+ seasons.  he stayed in cincinnati until may of 1983 when his dodger double dipper destiny was fulfilled.
in one of al campanis' worst trades, landestoy returned to la to back up reigning rookie of the year steve sax (who was hitting around .270 at the time of the trade) at the cost of a young left hander named john franco.  here's landestoy's 1984 topps card, documenting his double dipping status:
in his second time around with the blue, landestoy hit .178 in 118 at bats spread out over 117 games in 1983 and 1984.  he appeared in the 1983 nlcs against the phillies and went 0 for 2.  he was released by the dodgers in october of 1984, bringing an end to his career.  in total, he hit .191 as a dodger in 132 games.  in comparison, john franco pitched for 21 seasons and had 424 saves in his career.

here's to you rafael landestoy, dodger double dipper! 
[this is the ninth installment in the double dippers posts.  here are the previous posts - brett butler, omar daaleric young, nick willhitechris gwynn, mickey hatcherdave anderson, and don zimmer.]

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