Sunday, November 25, 2012

#256 Gene Garber Super Veteran

Then and Now: Gene Garber was a clean-shaven young chap for the Pirates.  He soon learned that if he wanted to be a bad ass relief ace he had to grow some facial hair.

Career Span:  6/17/1969 to 7/1/1988.  As a young Pirate, Garber played with a lot of great players like Clemente and Mazerowski.  He shared a mound briefly with veteran Jim Bunning who had been pitching in the majors since 1955.
Garber was teammates with Tom Glavine for about two weeks in 1987.  Glavine would go on to pitch until 2008.  (Garber just missed pitching with Tom "Flash" Gordon, '88-'09, while with the Royals)

All Star:  Garber was never an All-Star which is something no one else with 200 plus saves can honestly say.  He had some deserving seasons although looking at his career splits, he had a 3.63 first half ERA against a 3.01 mark in the second half.  Perhaps some slow starts hurt his chances.

League Leader:  Led the NL with 75 games and 47 games finished in 1975.

All-Time: 16th, 609 games finished
20th, 931 games pitched,
38th, 218 saves
8th Range Factor/9inn for Pitchers, 2.64. 
I guess a lot of Garber's sinkers were hit right back to him!

Make WAR:  Garber had four seasons between 2.4 and 2.9 WAR.  He had five more between 1.0 and 1.5 and finished his career with 15.1.

Postseason: Did not win a World Series.  1976 NLCS, did not pitch well taking the loss in the deciding game three.
He pitched better in the '77 NLCS winning game one and losing game three to the Dodgers.
His playoff struggles continued in the '82 NLCS as he was pegged with the loss in game two.
For his career he was 1-3, 5.79 ERA, 9.1 innings

Cy Young: The only time he received votes was when he finished 7th in 1982.

MVP: Likewise he finished 19th in the '82 MVP vote

HOF:  Nope.  Not even close.  Garber didn't received a single vote when he became eligible in '94.

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  1. What was the criteria for Super Veteran? 10 years hardly seems like a long time, especially someone of Garber's borderline non-star career.

  2. I'm not sure what Topps used to establish the Super Veteran subset. Garber looks to be the weakest choice. Gossage had 10 years and change but was a much better player. Other players I've already covered who would have made better choices for a Super Vet card: Carlton Fisk (13 years), Amos Otis (15), Hal McRae (14), Joe Niekro (16).
    When I think Super Veteran I think of someone who has been around 15+ years or at least a veteran who is super. Garber didn't fit the bill in '83