Friday, June 15, 2012
Unpossible Autograph Friday- Dave Boswell, Oriole #272
The Orioles family lost another member this past week when former Orioles pitcher Dave Boswell passed away on Monday from a heart attack. He was 67 years old.
Dave pitched in the Majors from 1964-71, mostly for the Twins, but also appeared briefly with the Tigers and O's at the end of his playing career. An arm injury knocked him out of baseball when he was just 27 years old.
He led the American League with a .706 win percentage in 1966 when he went 12-5 with the Twins and was generally known to give up a lot of hits but also struck out a large number of hitters. His time with the Orioles was at the tail-end of his career and didn't last very long. He made his Baltimore debut on May 29, 1971 and finished out the season with the Orioles; he went 1-2 with a 4.38 ERA over 15 appearances.
Unfortunately, his career was marred by a few off the field incidents, including a 1969 fight with his manager Billy Martin that left them both needing stitches. I know that Martin had a reputation as a fiery guy, so it's hard to assign blame to either party but it sounds as though Dave might have had a bit of a temper himself.
Since his time with the Orioles was so short, this Crown card is his only Orioles card. He had signed a copy of it in person for me at an Alumni Signing at Camden Yards a few years back but I am trying to upgrade to personalized autographs whenever possible. Interestingly, Dave had just returned this TTM request to me a mere nine days before his passing. I would have to guess that it was among the last autographs he signed in his life, so it makes it even more special to me.