I am currently in the Air Force, stationed at Luke AFB. All in all, the lifestyle is very enjoyable. But one very real sacrifice is being away from home, friends, and family. Following the White Sox through DirectTV's MLB package and projects like this keep me connected to home and those friends and family that also follow the White Sox.
34 different players stepped up to the plate or took the mound for the 1965 Chicago White Sox, but only 24 have White Sox baseball cards in the 1965 Topps set. The following players do not have White Sox cards in the set:
-Frank Lary, 26.2 IP
-Ted Wills, 19 IP
-Johnny Romano, 425 PA
-Gene Freese, 38 PA
-Bill Voss, 37 PA
-Tommie Agee, 21 PA
-Jim Hicks, 19 PA
-Duane Josephson, 11 PA
-Dick Kenworthy, 3 PA
-Bill Heath, 1 PA
By far the most significant absentee is Johnny Romano, the White Sox starting catcher in 1965. (J.C. Martin also saw significant time behind the plate.) Romano had been traded to the White Sox in January 1965 from the Indians in part of a three-team trade. The White Sox traded Mike Hershberger, Jim Landis, and Fred Talbot to the Kansas City Athletics. In addition to Romano, the White Sox also received Tommy John and Tommie Agee from the Indians. Interestingly, although Johnny Romano and Tommie Agee appear in the 1965 set as members of the Cleveland Indians, Topps managed to put Tommy John on a White Sox card before production of the set began.
At the peak of his career, Romano had played in two all-star games, but by 1965 was dipping below his career average in most major categories. He batted .242 with 39 runs, 48 RBI, and 18 HRs for the 1965 Chicago White Sox. He threw out 22 of 69 base stealers and allowed 11 passed balls.
In addition, five players appear on White Sox cards but did not play for the 1965 team:
-Fred Talbot (Traded to KCA during off-season)
-Mike Hershberger (Traded to KCA during off-season)
-Dave DeBusschere (Decided on a professional basketball career)
-Joel Gibson (Never made it to the big leagues)
-Gene Stephens (Never made it back to the big leagues after the 1964 season)
The remaining 24 players and manager Al Lopez have White Sox baseball cards in the 1965 set. I'll examine each one, starting in my next post with Don Buford, highlighting his performance on April 27, 1965.