Tuesday, January 17, 2017

no. 618 - tug mcgraw

Who is the man: Tug McGraw was coming off the most active season to date in what was then a five-year major league career. He appeared in a then-career high 57 games in 1970, all in relief. He was about to enter two of his most productive seasons for the Mets, in 1971 and 1972.

Can ya dig it: McGraw's signature is "Frank McGraw". Fantastic.

Right on: I grew up with McGraw as a long-haired Phillies pitcher. It took me awhile to discover this particular version of McGraw.

You see that cat McGraw is a bad mother: There aren't many players who can take credit for spurring a team to a championship with a single coined phrase, but that's what McGraw and his "Ya Gotta Believe" saying did for the 1973 Mets according to baseball lore.

Shut your mouth: Early in his career McGraw was asked whether he preferred natural grass or Astroturf, and McGraw responded with "I don't know. I never smoked Astroturf."

No one understands him but his woman: McGraw's famous son, country singer Tim McGraw, was born out of a relationship between Tug and Betty D'Agostino, who McGraw met when he was pitching for Triple A Jacksonville in 1966. He had three other children with wives Phyllis and Diane.

(A word about the back): The bio write-up reads like McGraw just made the major leagues the day before this card was created. Thirty-three words on his high school career. Sheesh.

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