Saturday, March 3, 2012

1977 Topps Baseball #118 - Rick Jones

  • This is one odd-looking airbrush job.
  • Rick Jones was drafted by the Boston Red Sox in 1973. He played in the minors from 1973-1975. 
  • Rick pitched for Winston-Salem (Class A) and Bristol (Class AA) and won 20 games all together in 1975.
  • In 1976 Rick beat out Jim Burton for a spot on the Boston pitching staff. Jones was only 20 years old at the time. Rick pitched well for the Red Sox (5-3, 3.36 ERA in 24 games/14 starts), but he was sent down in mid-August when Don Zimmer took over the club. The demotion was because Jones was socializing with certain players that Zimmer believed were having a negative influence on him. Jones was brought back up in September.
  • After the 1976 season there was some debate on whether or not the Red Sox would protect Jones in the expansion draft. It was said the Jones may have been a bit flaky.
  • Jones was drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the expansion draft. He was reunited with former Rex Sox manager Darrell Johnson.
  • Jones was up and down with the Mariners during the 1977 season. He started the season in the minors and then was called up in May. Rick made ten starts for Seattle and then was sent back down in late June. He came back to the Mariners in September but didn't pitch for the rest of the year.
  • 1977 Stats
    • Seattle Mariners: 1-4, 5.10 ERA in 10 games
    • Wichita (AAA):  0-2, 5.54 ERA in 5 games (1 start)
  • 1977 Highlights:
  • Jones spent most of 1978 in AAA San Jose. He was called up in September and was 0-2 with a 5.84 ERA in three games.
  • Rick was traded (with Tom McMillan and Enrique Romo) to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Odell Jones, Mario Mendoza, and Rafael Vasquez after the 1978 season.
  • Jones pitched for the AAA Portland Beavers in 1979 and in 1980 but never got back to the majors.
  • Other card blogs: none


  1. The whole picture looks airbrushed, as if Topps didn't have a photo of Jones and they decided to have an airbrush artist create one, or the only photo they had was black and white (or of such poor quality that it couldn't be used on a card) and they used airbrushing to colorize it (or make it presentable). There are a few cards in the '78 set with this same kind of appearance, but I've never encountered this one before.

  2. This is the worst card in the set.

  3. Poor Rick -- having his only card look like this.

  4. Love this card, it is probably the first Topps painting of any card