Wednesday, September 16, 2020

#52 Ed Roebuck - Philadelphia Phillies


Edward Jack Roebuck
Philadelphia Phillies
Pitcher

Bats:  Right  Throws:  Right  Height:  6'2"  Weight:  185
Born:  July 3, 1931, Millsboro, PA
Signed:  Signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers as an amateur free agent before 1949 season
Major League Teams:  Brooklyn Dodgers 1955-1957; Los Angeles Dodgers 1958, 1960-1963; Washington Senators 1963-1964; Philadelphia Phillies 1964-1966
Died:  June 14, 2018, Lakewood, CA (age 86)

All but one of Ed Roebuck's 460 appearances in the Major Leagues came in relief, and he served as one of the game's most reliable relievers from the mid-1950s through the mid-1960s.  Roebuck was a member of the Brooklyn Dodgers team that won a World Series in 1955 and lost the Series in 1956 to the Yankees.  In 6 1/3 innings in the 1955 and 1956 World Series, he allowed only one run, and had an impressive ERA of 1.42.  Perhaps Roebuck's best season was 1962 when he went 10-2 with a 3.09 ERA and nine saves while appearing in 64 games for the Dodgers.  In his 11-year career, he finished in the top ten in the league in saves and appearances four different times.

After a few mediocre seasons with the Senators, Roebuck found new life with the Phillies, serving as one of their most durable relievers during the 1964 season but unfortunately he was part of that team's epic, late season collapse.  One of the game's most proficient fungo hitters, Roebuck was invited to Houston in 1964 to hit fungos as high as he could inside the Astrodome, still under construction, to make sure the roof would be high enough once official games commenced.

Following his playing days, Roebuck served as a scout for the Dodgers, Phillies, Braves, Reds, Pirates and Red Sox.  He retired in 2006 after earning his second World Series ring in 2004 as a scout for the Red Sox.

Some text for this post originally appeared on my 1956 Topps blog.

June 28th - Prepared for first
baseball action of 2020
Building the Set
July 8, 2020 from Cincinnati, OH - Card #120
In need of some cardboard therapy as we approached the four month anniversary of the start of our social distancing, I went on a mini eBay binge the first week of July.  We had a vacation planned for the last week of June, first week of July, and that vacation had been unceremoniously cancelled at some point in April.  Major League Baseball was showing signs of coming back, the Black Lives Matter movement was finally gaining momentum, the pandemic showed no signs of going away any time soon and a complete lack of intelligent national leadership wasn't helping anything or anybody.  I needed some old baseball cards.

17 cards arrived on July 8th, including this Roebuck card purchased from Dean's Cards for $3.75.  I browsed the Dean's Cards eBay store, setting a reasonable budget and determined to click Buy It Now on 10 cards.  Another group of 7 cards were won in eBay auctions from Greg Morris Cards on the same day.  The 17 cards added put us just over the 20% completion point for our 1965 Topps set.

The Card / Phillies Team Set
This card marks the ninth and final appearance of Roebuck in a Topps flagship set.  It's his most readily available Phillies baseball card although he's also in the 1964 Philadelphia Bulletin set, the 1978 TCMA The 1960s set and he signed reprints of this card for the 2014 Topps Heritage Real One Autographs insert set.  On the back of the card, his time with the Dodgers and their World Series appearances is mentioned, along with his role as a "crack fireman" with the Phillies in 1964.

1965 Season / Phillies Career
On April 21, 1964, the Senators sold Roebuck to the Phillies and he appeared in 60 games in relief.  In parts of three seasons with the Phillies, Roebuck appeared in 110 games, pitching to a 10-8 record and a 2.83 ERA.  He recorded 15 saves, second only to Jack Baldschun (#555) and his 27 saves during that same stretch.  During the late season collapse of 1964 resulting in ten straight losses, Roebuck pitched in four games and was scored upon only once.

The Phillies released him following the 1965 season, but he re-signed with them as a free agent and appeared in six games before getting released again on July 23, 1966.  He served as a scout for the Phillies after retiring as an active player, but I can't find any reference as to what years he was with the club either online or from the team's yearbooks or media guides.

1955 Topps #195
1958 Topps #435
1961 Topps #6
1962 Topps #535
1964 Topps #187
Other Notable Baseball Cards
First Mainstream Card:  1955 Topps #195
Topps Flagship Set Appearances (9):  1955-1956, 1958, 1960-1965
Most Recent Mainstream Card:  2014 Topps Heritage Real One Autographs #ROA-ER

52 - Roebuck non-parallel baseball cards in the Beckett online database as of 7/16/20.

Sources:  
1956 Topps
Baseball Reference
Beckett Database
The Phillies Room
SABR
The Trading Card Database

Previous Card:  #51 Billy Bryan - Kansas City Athletics
Next Card:  #53 Dick McAuliffe - Detroit Tigers

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