THE ROLLIE FINGERS COLLECTION
He may not have exactly revolutionized relief pitching, but he certainly perfected the craft and gave new stature to the long-neglected bullpen ace. He was an imposing figure striding in from the pen, long and lean and with a bristling Mephistophelean mustache that made him resemble a Prussian officer. But Rollie Fingers was all quiet efficiency on the mound, coolly dispatching hitters with his hard slider and pinpoint control. He was the closer and much more for Charlie Finley’s three-time world champion Oakland A’s of the early ‘70’s, and his total of six saves, two each in the World Series of 1972, ‘73 and ‘74, remains a record. He pitched in 16 Series games, a total of 33 innings, with 25 strikeouts and only 10 walks. His earned run averages were 1.74, 0.66 and 1.93, and his one win and two saves in the five-game win over the Dodgers in 1974 earned him that Series’ Most Valuable Player honors.
Fingers retired after the 1985 season with a major league record, since broken, of 341 saves. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1992, only the second relief pitcher (Hoyt Wilhelm was the first) so honored. Of the collection Rollie states, “I have had almost all of my awards and memorabilia now for over 40 years and have enjoyed displaying them in my home. I’ve decided now to let the fans of baseball and collectors enjoy them and display them proudly. I’ve had so many wonderful years of playing this great game of baseball with the A’s, Padres, and Brewers and have had the honor of playing with 10 future Hall of Famers during my career. I hope the winning bidders enjoy these items as much as I did earning them.”