John Curtis (baseball)
March 9, 1948 |
|August 13, 1970 for the Boston Red Sox|
Last MLB appearance
|September 28, 1984 for the California Angels|
|Earned run average||3.96|
John Duffield Curtis (born March 9, 1948 in Newton, Massachusetts) is a former Major League Baseball pitcher. He was originally drafted by the Cleveland Indians in the first round of the 1966 Major League Baseball Draft out of Smithtown High School in Smithtown, New York, but did not sign, choosing instead to attend Clemson University. After two seasons at Clemson, he was drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the first round of the secondary phase of the 1968 Major League Baseball Draft, and signed with the club.
Boston Red Sox
Curtis was called to the majors during his third minor league season, and made his major league debut as a reliever on August 13, 1970 against the Kansas City Royals. After getting through his first two innings with just one hit and one walk, he loaded the bases, and gave up a grand slam to Ed Kirkpatrick in his third inning of work. He wouldn't pitch in the majors again for over a year.
When he returned to the BoSox in September 1971, he was used as a starter by manager Eddie Kasko. After losing his first two starts against the New York Yankees and Detroit Tigers, he got his first major league win out of the bullpen against the Cleveland Indians. He then pitched a complete game victory over the Washington Senators in his final game of the season.
Curtis began the 1972 season with the triple A Louisville Colonels, however, was back with the Red Sox by the end of May. He was traded after the 1973 season with Mike Garman and Lynn McGlothen to the St. Louis Cardinals for Reggie Cleveland, Terry Hughes and Diego Segui.
St. Louis Cardinals
The Cards were battling the Pittsburgh Pirates for first place in the National League East all season when the Bucs came to Busch Stadium for a three game set September 23–25, 1974. The Pirates took two of the three with Curtis taking the loss in the second game. Curtis spent three seasons in St. Louis, going 24-34 with a 3.88 earned run average and 208 strikeouts, mostly as a starter. After the 1976 season, he was traded to the San Francisco Giants with Willie Crawford and Vic Harris for Mike Caldwell, John D'Acquisto and Dave Rader. Curtis became predominantly a reliever for the first time in his career while with the Giants. He went 17-15 with a 4.45 ERA over three seasons with the Giants, in which, he appeared in 116 games.
San Francisco Giants
Curtis played for the San Francisco Giants from 1977 to 1979. In his first start for the Giants on May 8, 1977, Curtis pitched a 2-hit 10-0 shutout vs the Mets and hit for two singles and a triple. While playing for the Giants Curtis lived in Foster City, California.
San Diego Padres
He was converted back to a starter when he signed with the San Diego Padres as a free agent for the 1980 season, and emerged as the ace of the staff by the end of the season, going 10-8 with a 3.51 ERA for the last place team. He began the strike shortened 1981 season as a starter, but after going 0-2 with a 6.30 ERA in that role, he was converted to a reliever, and pitched exclusively in that role during the second half of the season when play resumed.
Curtis' contract was purchased by the California Angels on August 31, 1982 during their playoff drive. Though he joined his new club in time to be on the post season roster, he did not see any playing time during the 1982 American League Championship Series. He remained with the Angels through 1984, then retired.
Curtis lives in Long Beach, California with his wife, Mary Ann. Upon retiring, Curtis began freelance writing articles for the San Diego Union-Tribune, Boston Globe, San Francisco Chronicle and Sports Illustrated. After a nearly twenty-year absence from the game, he returned to coach the Long Beach Breakers during the two-year run of the independent Western Baseball League (2001 & 2002).
- "Kansas City Royals 11, Boston Red Sox 3". Baseball-Reference.com. 1970-08-13.
- "New York Yankees 3, Boston Red Sox 0". Baseball-Reference.com. 1971-09-06.
- "Detroit Tigers 3, Boston Red Sox 2". Baseball-Reference.com. 1971-09-12.
- "Boston Red Sox 10, Cleveland Indians 7". Baseball-Reference.com. 1971-09-16.
- "Boston Red Sox 6, Washington Senators 3". Baseball-Reference.com. 1971-09-25.
- "Pittsburgh Pirates 7, St. Louis Cardinals 3". Baseball-Reference.com. 1974-09-24.
- Ron Fimrite (1980-05-12). "Has Typewriter, Will Pitch". Sports Illustrated.
- "Where Are They Now: John Curtis". Baseball Savvy.com.
- Career statistics and player information from MLB, or ESPN, or Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube, or Baseball-Reference (Minors), or Baseball Almanac