Saturday, January 30, 2010
#348) TOM EDENS
Tom Edens was traded by the Kansas City Royals to the New York Mets on April 1, 1984 in exchange for Tucker Ashford. The right-hander had been selected by the Royals in the 14th round of the 1983 amateur draft and was assigned to the minors when joining the Mets. He pitched his way to Triple-A Tidewater in 1986. When the Mets found themselves in dire need of starting pitchers due to a rash of injuries midway through the 1987 season they turned to the Tides staff. "I knew they needed help," Edens said, "and I got the idea it might be me when I was asked to pitch a day early. In the first four innings, I didn't allow any runs, and we were ahead... My manager, Mike Cubbage, got me aside in one corner of the dugout and said: 'Do you want to go back out there and get the win here? Or do you want to come out now and pitch Tuesday in Los Angeles?' "I said I wanted to do both, but he made me an offer that I couldn't refuse."
So on June 2, 1987 he made his major league debut at Dodger Stadium. Tom would leave after five innings of work with the score tied 3-3. The game would go to Los Angeles in the final innings with veteran reliever, Jesse Orossco taking the loss in an eventual 3-6 final score. The rookie had not pitched poorly, but was not gaining support from the Mets management. On June 7th, The New York Times printed an article stating that the legendary Tom Seaver was exploring the idea of returning to New York due to the desperate situation of injuries to the Mets' staff. "Is Tommy Seaver better than (John) Mitchell or Edens right now, that's the question I had to answer," Manager Davey Johnson said, referring to the pitchers of that day's double-header. "My judgement is that he's better than those two kids. I think he'll do very well. Two or three weeks from now I think that everybody will find out that Tommy Seaver can still pitch." Edens would only last three innings in his start that day at Shea Stadium. He allowed three runs and uncorked two wild pitches. He was optioned back to Tidewater on June 11th. The same day that the Hall of Famer, Seaver threw in an exhibition game that saw the New York Mets facing the Tidewater Tides. Seaver lasted two innings and surrendered eight runs. The great experiment that Davey Johnson had boasted about was over. "Tom Terrific" clearly stated, "I've used up all the competitive pitches in my arm."
Edens was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies with Lenny Dykstra and Roger McDowell in exchange for Juan Samuel on June 18, 1987. Tom would pitch in the majors until 1995.
Tom Edens signed his card in the set from an autograph request sent to his home on January 29, 2010.