Thursday, June 21, 2012


Robert Person joined the New York Mets when he was traded from the Florida Marlins organization in exchange for Steve Long on March 30, 1994. The 25-year-old right-hander was sent to Double-A Binghamton where he compiled a 9-6 record with 130 strikeouts and a 3.45 ERA. Person split the 1995 campaign between Binghamton and Triple-A Norfolk. He was rewarded with a late-season call up to New York when rosters expanded at the close of the year.

Robert was used primarily as a starting pitcher in the minors, but made his big-league debut from the Mets bullpen on September 18, 1995. He threw two scoreless innings in the 7-1 New York loss to the Atlanta Braves at Fulton County Stadium. Days later, a steady rain at Shea Stadium postponed his home debut and first starting assignment in the major leagues. "I was on edge all night and I was so pumped up," Person was quoted. "My objective was to show what I can do and to pitch to the hitters like I can." Robert got that chance on September 27th, and made the most of his opportunity. He threw seven innings of one-run baseball and was credited with the 5-4 victory over the Cincinnati Reds. Person also added a pair of singles and scored a run. "Getting my first major league win and my first major league hit were both just as exciting as the other," beamed Robert. "I was proud of myself and my team."

Person was given a chance to pitch from the New York bullpen to start the 1996 season. He struggled early and was returned to Norfolk at the end of April with a 8.44 ERA. He returned to the Mets in June, but this time in the starting rotation. It was a change that seemed to make all the difference. Robert  hurled 20 innings in his first three starts while striking out 20 hitters. "I'm not looking over my shoulder," Person said. "I'm pretty confident now." When injured Mets pitcher, Paul Wilson returned from the disabled list it returned Robert to the relief core on July 12th. He finished the year pitching a combination of the two roles that yielded a final record of 4-5, 89.2 innings, 79 strikeouts and a 4.52 ERA.

That winter the Mets traded Person to the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for John Olerud on December 20, 1996. Robert would pitch nine years in the major leagues. Including a 15 win season with the Philadelphia Phillies in 2001.

Life after professional baseball was a struggle for Person. Bad business decisions saw the money he had earned disappear. "It's been hard," Robert told Sports Illustrated in 2011. "Sometimes I get down, But I try not to stay down. When you're playing you assume—by investing your money—you'll be set for life. Well, I trusted the wrong people. Bad people who took advantage." The former pitcher found limited work as a carpenter in Largo, Florida and played in several recreational leagues. "I left my ego at the door a long time ago."

I created Robert Person's card in the set from an autographed index card purchased from Kyle's Sportscards on November 20, 2011.

Monday, June 18, 2012


Mike Scott was selected by the New York Mets organization in the second round of the free agent draft on June 8, 1976. The right-hander from Pepperdine University pitched very well for the Double-A Jackson Mets, but not as strong at the Triple-A level in 1978.

Scott earned a spot on the Mets staff with a good spring training the next year. He made his major-league debut with New York on April 18, 1979. Mike threw two innings in relief of Pat Zachary during the Mets 6-5 loss to the Expos in Montreal. His next appearance was as the starting pitcher at Shea Stadium on April 24th. Scott threw five innings and was credited with the victory in the 10-3 win over the San Francisco Giants.

Mike led the club's pitching staff with a 3.90 ERA in 1981. His 13 losses, and 100 runs allowed were the team highs the following season. The Mets traded Scott to the Houston Astros in exchange for Danny Heep on December 10, 1982. "Inconsistency has been Mike's tag," explained Mets broadcaster, Tim McCarver at the time of the trade. "But he could be a good pitcher someday."

"I was just trying to hang on." remembered Scott. "I think that you go through different phases when you get to the big leagues. The first phase is just to hang on. You try to stay on the team and see if you belong there or not. The next phase is to produce and do something, be one of the guys who contribute. After that you want to win a World Series."

The hurler added a new weapon by learning the split-fingered fastball from legendary coach, Roger Craig after joining the Astros.

All seemed to come together for Mike Scott in Houston during 1986. He would throw a no-hitter on September 25th at the Astrodome to clinch the National League Western Division title. The victory earned the right to face the Eastern Division winning Mets in the Championship Series. Scott dominated New York in his two starts, but saw his Astros fall to the eventual World Champions 4 games to 2. Although a member of the losing team, he was named the Most Valuable Player of the 1986 NLCS. It was the first time in baseball history that this had ever occurred.

Mike's performance was clouded by accusations that he illegally scuffed the baseballs he threw. The controversy was revisited during MLB Network's program "1986: A Postseason to Remember". "We knew this during the season," Keith Hernandez revealed during his interview. "because when you're the home team, every foul ball that goes up to the screen and gets rolled back down, the batboy collects it. It doesn't go to the visitor's side, It goes to the home team side, so we knew." Mike Scott returned with, "They can believe whatever they want to believe. Every ball hits the ground has something on it...I've thrown balls that were scuffed but I haven't scuffed every ball that I've thrown."

Scott left baseball after the 1991 season. Facing a surgery with a long rehabilitation he chose to leave with a career record of 124-108. The Houston Astros honored their right-handed star by retiring his jersey number 33 in 1992.  "I would have traded me too." Mike offered in 2003. "I have no animosity to the Mets. They got me to the big leagues." Scott has enjoyed time with family, and playing golf in his retirement. "My wife and I talked about traveling. We haven't really gone to Europe. I'm going to keep doing what I'm doing now. I'm enjoying it."

Mike Scott signed his card in the set during a private signing in Houston on January 6, 2012.

Friday, June 8, 2012


Kevin Roberson joined the New York Mets organization when he signed a minor-league free agent contract on November 12, 1995. The switch-hitting outfielder was invited to spring training camp in February. Roberson was taking part in team physicals when a routine blood test became eventful. "Sometimes when I take those tests, I start to feel like that," Kevin said. "I can't explain it. I just feel a little light-headed." He had to lie down for 10 minutes before the test could be completed.

Roberson earned the final outfield spot on the Opening Day roster after showing a quick bat with power. The slugger recorded five home runs in Florida. He made his New York Mets debut on April 3, 1996. Kevin delivered a pinch-hit single off Dennis Eckersley in the ninth inning of New York's 5-3 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals at Shea Stadium.

Kevin got his first start of the season on April 27th. Manager Dallas Green was looking for help to shake up a struggling lineup. Roberson responded with a ninth inning three-run home run to help the Mets rally to a 7-4 win over the Pirates in Pittsburgh. He showed too much inconsistency at the plate to become the regular right fielder. The Mets chose to promote a highly-touted Alex Ochoa from the minor leagues to fill the position. Roberson appeared in 27 games before being outrighted to Triple-A Norfolk on June 1st where he finished the season with the Tides. He ended up with three home runs, 9 RBIs, and a .222 batting average at the major league level.

Kevin left the organization when he signed as a free agent with the San Francisco Giants on November 25, 1996.

I created Kevin Roberson's card in the set from an autographed index card purchased from Kyle's Sportcards on November 20, 2011.