Today our 2015 HoF Candidates series takes a look at journeyman pitcher Paul Byrd.
2001 Topps #656 Paul Byrd
Byrd spent 14 years in the Majors, but never more than four with any one club. The two teams he spent the most time with were the the Phillies and their current opponent the Atlanta Braves.
During those 14 seasons Byrd racked up 109 wins and represented Phillies on the 1999 Al-Star team. Byrd got into postseason play with four different clubs. The closest he got to the World Series was as a member of the 2007 Indians who pushed the Red Sox to seven games in the ALCS. Earlier in the 07 Postseason Byrd got the W while eliminating the Yankees in the ALDS.
In addition to being a pitcher Paul Byrd is also an author. Following his big Postseason with the Indians Byrd published "Free Byrd", an account of his Faith in God and the temptations associated with Major League Baseball. You can pick up the book for $4
An eon ago, probably about the same time the above card was produced, I was going over pitchers in a Fantasy Baseball magazine. The Magazine had a buzz synopsis along with each players projected stat line. The comment associated with Rick Reed, a replacement player in the Mets organization, was "A Poor Man's Greg Maddux". Further down the roster Paul Byrd was listed as "A Poor Man's Rick Reed". So there you have it Paul Byrd was 2 degrees in talent removed from the Hall of Fame.
Sources and Links
2015 Topps HoF Candidates
San Francisco Chronicle/SF Gate