Thursday, March 28, 2019

50 Years Ago - 1969 Opening Day Lineups (AL)

Here are the opening day lineups from half a century ago. Teams are shown in order of their 1969 finish.

East Division:

After a 2-year hiatus (because of injuries to the pitching staff and Frank Robinson) the Orioles are once again kings of the American League.

The 1968 World Champs finished in second place the next year. By mid-season, Mickey Stanley was back in the outfield.

Opening Day was Tony C’s first game since getting beaned in August 1967.

The Senators had Ted Williams at the helm in 1969. At least he got Ed Brinkman to hit over .200.

The Yankees embarked on their first season without Mickey Mantle since 1950. This was Bobby Murcer’s rookie season. By mid-season, they settled on Jerry Kenney at 3B, with Murcer in the outfield.

Topps never made a baseball card for Tony Horton. This custom card is by John Hogan at the Cards That Never Were blog.

West Division:

Graig Nettles split the Twins’ left field job with Bob Allison. The next season Nettles was traded to the Indians and began a long career as a third baseman.

This was the Athletics’ second year in Oakland. Once again, the Topps photographers were caught napping.

After 2 years in Japan, Dick Stuart returned to the States to play for the Angels. After playing 22 games in the first 2 months, his career was over.

In their infinite wisdom, the American League put both expansion teams in the West division, guaranteeing that at least 1 of the 4 new teams would not finish last. The Royals' one bright spot was Lou Piniella, who won AL Rookie of the Year.


Jim Bouton’s favorite team! By mid-season, Tommy Harper moved to 3B, John Donaldson was at 2B, and rookie Wayne Comer was playing center field.  In Spring training the Pilots traded disgruntled rookie Lou Piniella to the other expansion team. (That’ll teach him to be an upstart! heh heh) All he did was win the ROY. Just one of many bad moves by the Pilots.

NL Opening Day lineups are here.


Unknown said...

Always love these posts. Thanks.

Odd thing I just noticed. Ed Stroud ("The Creeper", one of my favorite nicknames ever) is airbrushed out of a White Sox uniform. Yet his 1968 card shows him proudly sporting his Washington togs. Camilo Paschal's card is the exact same pic as 1968 and it's a bad pic. The Creeper's photo is a good one for 1968.Topps just didn't make a whole lot of sense in the 60's.

Jim from Downingtown said...

The Jim Grant card (Expos) shows him in an Indians' uniform, where he didn't play since early-1964.