Monday, March 27, 2006

March 27th, 1973

Jim Perry Accepts Trade

I wrote last year about Ron Santo being the first player to decline a trade based on his 10-5 rights, the rule which says any player with ten years in the Majors and five with his current team has to approve any potential trade. When I declared Ron Santo "the first 10-and-5 man" I was not only being a trifle generous with the hyphens, but also a tad unclear in my facts. Ron Santo wasn't the first man to have 10-5 rights (I don't know who that is, although I suppose it could be discovered), he was just the first player to have them and use them to decline a trade. But that doesn't mean that hadn't come into play before.

Jim Perry is the less well-known half of the second winningest brother tandem in history, along with his brother Gaylord. (The Perrys, incidentally, come in at 529 wins, just ten behind the Niekros but still a ways ahead of the Madduxs.) While Gaylord Perry is most famous for his spitball, Jim was a more honest, but more mediocre pitcher. He spent the bulk of his career with the Twins, winning twenty-four games and the Cy Young award in 1970.

In 1973 however, the Twins decided that Perry, now thirty-seven, was about finished and arranged a trade to the Tigers for minor leaguer Danny Fife and cash. Perry however, who had been in the Majors since 1959 and with the Twins since mid-1963 could've scrapped the idea, had he choosen. However, Perry decided he didn't want to be where he wasn't wanted, and allowed the deal to continue. So there you are, we've now had Ron Santo, the first man to decline a 10-5 trade, and Jim Perry, the first man to accept one.

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