h2h corner ~ Check You out on the Flip Side ~ Charlie Kerfeld

I feel like this entire card is an homage to a practical joke. While the grammar leaves one wanting, it’s pretty darn accurate. Kerfeld was absolutely a free spirit: when Jim Deshaies signed for $110,000 in 1987, Kerfeld demanded $110,037.37 and 37 boxes of orange Jell-O. His uniform was number 37.

Kerfeld, it is rumored, also always wore a Jetsons’ tee shirt because of the name of the dog in that particular cartoon. He hung out with Larry Anderson and Dave Smith in the bullpen while wearing Conehead heads…no talk of whether they played pong, drank Southern Comfort or ate bar-b-q.

A former first round pick in the June secondary draft of 1982, Kerfeld was a good reliever for exactly one season for the Astros. That happened to be 1986, which had to be the highlight of his life for so many reasons. He went 11-2 in 61 appearances, spanning 93.2 IPs. He walked a ton of batters (as he did his entire career), but made up for it with a good strand rate and BABIP.

The Astros happened to be a pretty darn good team in 1986 – good enough to win the NL West (back when the Astros were in the West division). If you don’t know, he gave, perhaps, the greatest drunken interview in the history of sports after they clinched: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xC2y3RmQUdw. Kerfeld is a good ole boy, who drank a Busch on camera and got away with pouring a beer on Nolan Ryan (1:48 mark).

He pitched pretty well in the post-season that year, making three appearances and posting a 2.25 ERA, 0.75 WHIP and 4 K:BB rate in four innings. Unfortunately, he gave up the winning run on a Gary Carter single in the bottom of the 12th inning of game five. Two-time flip sider, Jesse Orosco got the win…go figure.

Kerfeld would battle regression, poor walk rates and calcium deposits and other injuries for the rest of his career. He was out of baseball after the 1990 season.

You might wonder what that good ole boy is up to now. Well, he’s special assistant to the general manager for the Philadelphia Phillies…go figure.

@h2h_corner on twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/h2h_corner

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