I decided to step away from writing my magnum opus on Paul Faries for a moment to acknowledge one of today's Padres birthdays. Five former Friars were born on this date but most of you only give a dang about Goose Gossage. I don't care if you don't care; I'm going to give one of the lesser-known ones a mention even though he didn't save over 300, or even any, games in the big leagues.
Curt Blefary was born this day 70 years ago. The 1965 American League Rookie of the Year with Baltimore, Blefary is probably best known for his inclusion in the groundbreaking book Ball Four. Clank, as Frank Robinson nicknamed Blefary due to his defensive inadequacy, spent 1970 and '71 back in the American League with New York and Oakland before being traded to San Diego in May, 1972 for original Padre Ollie Brown. He hit below the yet-to-be-named Mendoza Line with three doubles and three homers in 122 plate appearances wearing gold and brown. He was released after the season and signed with the Braves, who assigned him to AAA Richmond where he lasted all of seven games, collecting one hit in twenty at-bats, and was out of the game for good. Sadly, Blefary won't be blowing out any candles today, as he passed on a dozen years ago.
Coincidentally, I ordered the card pictured above yesterday without knowing today was his birthday. Why would I purposely buy a card of someone listed as a Yankee? Well, in addition to Padres and Joey Cora, I also collect guys who were mentioned in Ball Four. Ordinarily I would never use a picture of a card I don't have in my physical possession but since I technically own it, it seemed alright to jump the gun a couple of days.
In addition to Blefary and Gossage, former pitchers Dave Eiland, Tim Worrell, and Doug Bochtler are also celebrating birthdays today. It's a distinct possibility that I might write posts about each of them for the sole purpose of irking commenters who claim to skip articles bearing my byline but somehow know the details of things I've written.