#224 Tommie Sisk
The corners on this card are pretty good, but the bad centering and some wear on the surface probably put it in the EX range at best.
This is Tommie Sisk’s first individual card. He appeared on a combo rookie stars card in 1963 that happens to be very valuable. Not because of Sisk, but because of a guy named Gaylord Perry.
The trivia question asks who holds the record for grand slams in a month. As of the printing of this card, only one person had ever hit 3 grannies in a single month — Rudy York of the Tigers in May 1938. Since 1964, it’s happened 8 times:
Jim Northrup, Detroit, June 1968 (2 were in the same game on June 24)
Larry Parrish, Texas, July 1982
Eric Davis, Cincinnati, May 1987
Mike Blowers, Seattle, August 1995
Mike Piazza, Los Angeles, April 1998
Shane Spencer, NY Yankees, September 1998
Devon White, Milwaukee, May 2001
Carlos Beltran, NY Mets, July 2006 (I remember all 3 of these well)
Tommie Sisk was a bright young pitching prospect for the Pirates in 1964, but he never quite broke out as a star and pitched his final game at the age of 28.
Sisk was signed by Pittsburgh as an 18-year-old in 1960, and made a brief MLB debut in 1962. In ’63, Sisk was very effective out of the bullpen, posting a 2.92 ERA in 108 IP. He made 57 appearances that year, which was a huge number in those days.
But everything went south in 1964, when his ERA ballooned to 6.16 and his WHIP was just under 2. The Pirates stuck with him in ’65, though, and he was fairly good.
In 1966 and ’67, Sisk moved largely to a starting role. In the latter year, he went 13-13 with a 3.34 ERA in 31 starts. But, adjusted for his park, that ERA was exactly average. After another uninspiring year in 1968, Sisk was shipped to the expansion San Diego Padres.
In 1969, he went 2-13 with San Diego, mostly as a reliever. His 4.78 ERA was dismal for what was still the dead ball era, but he did pick up the first save in Padre history.
The Padres traded Sisk to the White Sox just before the start of the 1970 season, and he finished his career with 33.1 IP on the southside. He was traded again, to Cleveland, but never appeared in a game for the Indians, instead toiling in AAA the rest of the year. He didn’t fare any better in Winnipeg the next season (Montreal’s affiliate), and hung it up for good at age 29.
Sisk finished his career with a 40-49 record and 88 ERA+. The Oklahoma native is currently 68 years old.