Kelloggs Cards

Kelloggs Cards

Friday, March 18, 2016

Joliet, IL Has Always Been Known For It's Baseball Players

I drove through Joliet, Illinois on my way home from Peoria.  Joliet has always had strong baseball teams.   21 players born in Joliet have made it to the big leagues.  The area continues to be strong so I'd expect more in the future.

The list includes Jesse Barfield, Mark Leiter, Jack Perconte, Jeff Reed, Ed Spezio, Scott Spezio, Bill Sudakis and Larry Gura.  Only Gura found his way into a Kellogg's set.

Gura played from 1970 to 1985.  I remember him when he was a youngster with the Cubs and when he was a good pitcher for the Royals.  Baseball-Reference.com reminds me that he played five years with the Cubs, 10 with the Royals and two with the Yankees.  I'd forgotten that he finished his career back with the Cubs.

I knew that Gura had a Kellogg's card in 1981 but I didn't remember that he also appeared in the 1983 set.  In 1980 he was 18-10 and in 1982 he was 18-12 so it isn't a surprise to see how he was selected.  The only other time he surpassed 13 wins was 1978 when he was 16-4.  He received Cy Young votes in all three of those year.  His career record was 126 wins and 97 losses.

In five years with the Cubs he only managed to get into 59 games.  After being traded to the Rangers who he never played for, he ended up getting into the starting rotation with the Yankees during his second season there.

He was selected to the 1980 American League All-Star team.

John Ellis sure liked batting against Gura.  Ellis had five homers and 17 RBIs in 36 at-bats against Gura.  That's pretty good for a guy who only hit 69 homers while averaging a homer every 39 at-bats in his career.

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