Pitcher Bud Byerly Teaches Me A Lesson!

Topps can thank Bill Rigney for the smile
on Bud’s face!

I first wrote about Bud Byerly July 13. I don’t know if the former pitcher ever coached. However, he re-taught me an important lesson with his response.

I included a blank page for Byerly’s response to my questions. The page was folded into thirds.

The top third was filled with writing. However, there was no signature. That’s nothing new. I’ve suspected that a few former players feel that I’d be hawking their responses for top dollar if an autograph was included. Somehow, I stopped reading at the fold.

At any rate, I prepared to put the unfolded full page flat into a file folder. There, Byerly included one extra answer.

“Bill Rigney helped me get a second chance.”

Rigney managed the Giants in 1959-60. I asked Byerly how he extended his career, battling back from repeated minor league stints.

Be prepared for surprises. In my envelope from Bob Sykes, I thought I had just his autograph on my returned letter.

Nope. On a piece of card stock 1 inch tall by 5-3/4 wide, he had typed out the words to the Bible verse Philippians 4:13 — “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” This mini-bonus seemed wedged in the bottom crease of the envelope.

Byerly sent me more than one sentence, in a sense. Pages front to back, top to bottom. Envelopes shaken. Thanks to “Coach” Byerly, I’m double- and triple-checking everything. I don’t want to miss a word from baseball’s past.

Coming Friday: Meet Juan Rosales, the creator of the blog Baseball Interactions.

St. Louis Native Bud Byerly Grew Up To Live, Pitch ‘Dizzy’ Cardinals Dream

Kudos to the site
http://www.krispaulw.com/ for sharing
this great 1983 TCMA  card. I remember
retirees in the 1980s loving
to sign such obscure images.

Numbers tell only part of the story. Stats are limited.

Eldred “Bud” Byerly was born Oct. 26, 1920 in Webster Groves, Missouri. What do you ask a 90-year-old former pitcher? I wanted to know how it felt to debut for the nearby Cardinals in 1943, then participate in a World Series championship a year later.

Byerly responded:

“The Cardinals were my favorite team and Dizzy Dean was my idol.

So living in in St. Louis was great.

A couple dozen friends and family attended the games.”

Coming Thursday: Thoughts on finding baseball addresses on your own.