Gaylord Jackson Perry
San Francisco Giants
Born: September 15, 1938, Williamston, NC
Signed: Signed by the San Francisco Giants as an amateur free agent, June 3, 1958
Major League Teams: San Francisco Giants 1962-1971; Cleveland Indians 1972-1975; Texas Rangers 1975-1977; San Diego Padres 1978-1979; Texas Rangers 1980; New York Yankees 1980; Atlanta Braves 1981; Seattle Mariners 1982-1983; Kansas City Royals 1983
Hall of Fame Induction: 1991
Gaylord Perry established himself as one of the premier pitchers in baseball in the 1960s with the Giants, before going on to win the Cy Young Award in both leagues with the Indians in 1972 and the Padres in 1978. He was the first to accomplish that feat. Known for potentially throwing a spitball ("real or imagined" as his Hall of Fame biography puts it), Perry constantly outmatched batters over his 22-year career.
Perry was a five-time All-Star and a five-time 20-game winner. He led the league in wins three times - in 1970 with 23, 1972 with 24 and 1978 with 21. In 690 career starts, he threw 303 complete games and 53 shutouts, joining the 300-win club in 1982. His 314 career wins are currently 17th on the all-time list and his 3,534 career strikeouts are currently 8th on the all-time list. Along with his brother Jim (#351), the Perry's are the second-winningest brother combination in baseball history (529 wins) behind Joe and Phil Niekro (#461) (539 wins).
Perry pitched a no-hitter against the Cardinals and Bob Gibson (#320) on September 17, 1968. He was elected into baseball's Hall of Fame in 1991 on his third year of eligibility with 77.2% of the votes cast in favor of his election.
When we took a family vacation to San Francisco in August 2019, Doug posed with Perry's statute outside the Giants' ballpark.
Building the Set
January 25, 2020 from Los Angeles, CA - Card #41
Some January days are longer than others, and on a particularly long January day at work a few months ago, I decided I needed a few more 1965 Topps cards for our set. I've been familiar with Greg Morris Cards for a while now, as I've been using a lot of the images of old Topps cards scanned for their eBay auction listings in these posts and within the posts over at my 1956 Topps blog. The images are always centered and clear and for all the help Greg Morris has indirectly provided me, I thought I'd browse his eBay store.
Given the vast inventory available, I figured there had to be at least a few 1965 Topps cards up for auction, and I was correct. I stumbled upon a set break and I set about finding auctions with no current bidders and cards graded at least EX-MT. I bid on a total of 20 auctions, winning 10 of them including this Perry card, the "big" card from the haul. My opening bid of $7.50 won the auction, and that seems like an extremely reasonable price for a Hall of Famer's baseball card from the mid-1960s.
This is Perry's fourth Topps card, and he had the unusual situation of appearing on his own solo rookie card in 1962 and then appearing on a multi-player, floating heads Rookie Stars card in 1963. Gaylord's brother Jim appears later in the set with the Twins. The game referenced on the back took place on May 31, 1964. Perry relieved Ron Herbel (#84) in the 13th with the game with the Mets tied at 6-6. He pitched 10 shutout innings, striking out nine and earned the win when the Giants scored twice in the top of the 23rd inning.
Giants Team Set
This was to be the final season before Perry came into his own as a dominant pitcher. He appeared in 47 games, making 26 starts and went 8-12 with a 4.19 ERA. He began the season in the starting rotation, but lost his spot and was turned into a long reliever/swing man by manager Herman Franks (#32). His SABR biography notes Perry was cranky throughout the 1965 season, often arguing with umpires and openly criticizing his fielders if they made errors behind him.
First Mainstream Card: 1962 Topps #199
Topps Flagship Set Appearances (23): 1962-1984
Most Recent Mainstream Card: 2016 Topps Archives #212
Each of Perry's many teams are represented through the years on his Topps baseball cards. His final Topps flagship card is shared with fellow retiring stars Johnny Bench and Carl Yastrzemski (#385).
821 - Perry non-parallel baseball cards in the Beckett online database as of 1/30/20.
National Baseball Hall of Fame
The Trading Card Database
In some cases, the first and last cards listed above are subjective and chosen by me if multiple cards were released within the same year. Most recent mainstream card may also be subjective and does not include extremely low serial numbered cards, buybacks or cut autograph cards.