Re: Bob Purkey, Reds Pitcher Dies at age 78
Bob Purkey was my favorite Red as a kid. He had that infectious smile and won games. ONe player once said facing Purkey was like going to the dentist. He was a gentleman and a damn good pitcher.
Purkey, as someone already mentioned, didn't throw the knuckler all the time, but boy was he effective, especially in 1962 when he led the league in winning percentage, but didn't win the Cy Young because he wasn't a Dodger named Drysdale. That year, Drysdale was 25-9, but had a 3.59 ERA. Purkey's was 2.81.
He was 17 games in 1958 and 1960 and won 16 in the championship year of 1961.
I was such a fan that in 1986, when I was considering going into the insurance business, I found his agency adress and asked him if he thought going into the insurance business was a good idea. Purkey was a successful insurance agent after leaving baseball. To my surprise, i got a response from him advising me to go into the business and inviting me to visit him sometime at his Bethel Park office. I always planned to do so since my in-laws live in Pittsburgh, but never got around to it. I am regretting that now.
For years I used Purkey's card as an avatar, and I will put it up again, replacing the picture of James Hylton and me. He'll always be my favorite Red. Watching Willie Mays look stupid on one of his floaters is a constant memory.
Last edited by WVRedsFan; 03-19-2008 at 01:29 AM.