4.11.2011

Ross Grimsley, 1974 Topps Traded

Name: Ross Grimsley
Team: Baltimore Orioles
Position: Pitcher
Value of card: Hat and collar made of velvet
Key 1974 stat: TRADED
Sometimes, Wikipedia says it best: Ross Grimsley was one of the more colorful players of the 1970s, known for his superstitions and often flaky behavior. With the Reds, he was called into manager Sparky Anderson's office and told to stop corresponding with a "witch" who had been sending him good luck charms. Despite being a premier starting pitcher for the Reds, he was traded to the Orioles for Merv Rettenmund, a part-time outfielder, after the 1973 season, largely in part for his constant resistance to the Reds organization's conservative grooming rules. With the Orioles in 1974, he sported a huge mop of curly hair, prominent mustache, and 18 wins.

On Sept. 16, 1975, at Fenway Park, Grimsley, warming up in the Orioles' bullpen, responded to Boston fans' heckling by throwing a ball into the right field bleachers. The ball passed through the protective netting, injuring a Boston fan. The fan later successfully sued Grimsley and the Orioles.

He was accused by Yankees manager Billy Martin in 1977 of throwing spitball pitches using Vaseline hidden in his hair, which was usually somewhat greasy in appearance because of Grimsley's penchant for not showering during winning streaks. In addition to his nickname "Scuz" for his grooming habits, he was also called "Crazy Eyes" and known to wear turquoise contact lenses. Grimsley is now the pitching coach for the Richmond Flying Squirrels.
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