Jan 24, 2015

Late Sixties Mets Pitcher: Bill Graham (1967)

William Albert Bill Graham was born on January 21, 1937 in Flemingsburg, Kentucky. The right handed Florida Gator was originally signed by the Detroit Tigers in 1957.

He had a long minor league career going 64-69 with a 4.02 ERA in 183 games between A & AAA ball. Almost a full decade later he broke into the big leagues at age 29, pitching in two scoreless innings for the Detroit Tigers. His contract was purchased by the New York Mets in August of 1967 getting place on the staff right away.

He debuted on September 3rd against the Chicago Cubs pitching well until the 5th inning when Billy Williams & Ron Santo hit back to back HRs off him. He took his first loss, as the Mets got shut out by Hackensack, New Jersey's own Bill Hands. Hands would win 16 games or more for the Cubs from 1968-1970.

In Grahams next start he only gave up one earned run over seven innings, but took another loss, as the Cincinnati Reds Gary Nolan shut out New York 2-0.

After two no decisions Graham finally got his first & only career win. It came on September 29th, beating the Los Angeles Dodgers in a complete game 5-1 victory. He finished the season 1-2 with a 2.63 ERA, 14 strike outs in 27 innings pitched.

Graham finished his playing career after the season at age 30 retiring back in Kentucky. He passed away in 2006 at age 69.

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