Thursday, December 17, 2009
1969 One Cub At A Time - #593 - Don Nottebart
The Topps original, with a hatless Nottebart
My updated card has him in a Cubs uniform. Game action pictures of him with the Cubs are not easy to find. They're hard to find because Nottebart didn't see a lot of action with the Cubs!
He came to the Cubs on April 27 in a trade with the Reds. Here's how badly things were going for Don...in October, 1968, the Reds sold him to the Yankees. He pitched in four games for the Yankees, but on April 26, they gave him back to the Reds. Baseball reference says, "Returned to the Reds following previous purchase." The Reds really didn't want him, so the next day he was sent to the Cubs.
Nottebart spent the rest of the season with in Chicago, but was brought into only sixteen games. That's an average of under four game a month, not very much work at all.
One of the knocks against Cubs manager Leo Durocher is that he wore out his regulars. He had his go-to guys, and the rest rotted on the bench. Nottebart would be one of those who rotted. Truth be told, I have absolutely no recollection of him. When I first put some team sets together in the late '70's and saw this card of Nottebart, I was very surprised. I thought I knew who all the Cubs of 1969 were but I was wrong.
In the 16 games he did pitch in, Nottebart posted a 1-1 record, with an ERA of 7.00. His final appearance was on September 6, when he gave up three runs to the Pirates in only 1/3 of an inning. That would also be his final MLB game. He spent most of 1970 with the Cubs AA team, but quit for good after the season. I guess when you are 34 years old and pitching in AA, it is time to hang them up.