My Favorite Baseball CardPosted: February 18, 2008
My Favorite Baseball Card
This is my all-time favorite baseball card. Oscar Gamble had one of the great afros — his hair added about four inches to his height and often popped his batting helmet off his head.
Gamble was traded to the Yankees from the Indians for pitcher Pat Dobson following the 1975 season. When he joined New York, owner George Steinbrenner made him get his hair trimmed before he was issued a Yankee uniform.
“I went into (manager) Billy Martin’s office and asked him where my uniform was,” Gamble said. “He told me, ’George said when you get a haircut, we’d issue you a uniform.’ Elston Howard took me to get a haircut. It was time for it to go. I didn’t have a problem with that.”
According to some reports, when Gamble went home to his first wife Juanita (who sang the national anthem on occasion at Yankee Stadium), she cried when she saw him for the first time sans afro.
Gamble hit 17 home runs to help lead the Yankees to the 1976 American League pennant, and was then traded to the White Sox as part of a package that brought Bucky Dent to the Bronx. He returned to the Yankees for a five-year stint, beginning in 1980, and finished his career with the White Sox.
Hair today, gone tomorrow.