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This Day in Pirate History - 11/18   
Posted: Monday, November 18, 2002

By 81omar_moreno

Back on this date in 1998, the Pirates made one of their best trades acquiring Brian Giles from the Indians for Ricardo Rincon. At the time, Rincon was a 29 year old reliever in his 2nd season for the Bucs, he had pitched 60 and 62 games all out of the bullpen and posting ERA's of 3.45 and 2.91 despite having a record of just 4-10 combined.

Giles, who everyone on here should know about his Pirates career, was a platoon player, topping out at 17 homers and 66 RBI's playing 2 full and 2 part-time years for the Indians. He was 27 at the time of the trade.

Born on this date in 1924, was former Bucs first baseman Rocky Nelson who started game 7 of the 1960 World Series. Nelson originally joined the Bucs in between stops with the Cardinals and White Sox during the 1951 season. He batted .267 with 14 rbi's in 71 games. He bounced around between teams and the minors till he finally stuck with the Bucs in 1959. Playing as a back-up and defensive replacement for Dick Stuart, Nelson played in 266 games in his second stint from 1959-61. He only batted 502 times, getting 136 hits, but did bat .291 and .300 in 59 and 60 respectively.

During the 1960 World Series, Rocky appeared in 4 games, going 3-9 with a homer and 2 rbi's. The home run came in game 7 in the first inning. 1961 would be Nelson's last in the majors ending his career which started in 1949.

Also born on this date the same year as Rocky Nelson, who didn't have as successful a career, was pitcher Roy Wise. He was a member of the 1944 Pirates team that finished 2nd in the NL but 14.5 games behind the Cardinals who won 105 games. Wise would make his major league debut May 13th of that season out of the bullpen in a blowout loss vs the Braves. After his next game his major league career was over at the ripe old age of 19. His career totals 2 games, 3 innings pitched, 3 BB, 1 SO and an ERA of 9.00.

In keeping with the short career theme, Bill Hughes who was born in 1896 on this day, played for the 1921 Pirates. A diminutive right handed pitcher, Bill made his debut on Sept 15th and like Roy Wise, it would be a relief appearance in a loss against the Braves, but unlike Wise he wouldn't appear in another game. His career stats included, 2 innings, 1 run, 4.50 ERA and 2 strikeouts. Another similarity between Hughes and Wise was the record of the teams they played for, both finished 90-63 in 2nd place.

Curt Raydon, who was born in 1933 on this date, had a one year career also, but he was a little more successful then the previous 2 guys. As a 24 year old righty, he made the 1958 club out of spring training. He would pitch 31 games that season, 20 as a starter and finish with a 8-4, 3.62 overall record. His 85 strikeouts would place him 3rd on the team behind Bob Friend and Ron Kline.

Raydon wasn't much of a hitter, batting just .026 on the season, narrowly losing to Ron Kline in the batting futility contest as Kline batted .027 on the season. His won/loss% of .667 ranked him first in the National League, not bad for his only season.

Finally, born today was Jim Shellenback, who fans from the late 60's might remember. A lefty reliever, he played part of 3 seasons for the Bucs from 66-69 before being traded to Washington mid-season. He would appear in just 16 games in those 3 seasons and compiled a 1-1 record. Just 5 days after his first major league win on Sept 26, 1967 vs the Dodgers, Jim would be in a serious auto accident and wouldn't appear in the majors during the next season. He would pitch parts of 9 seasons in the big leagues finishing with a 16-30 record, but with a respectable 3.81 ERA.

His uncle Frank was a pitcher in the big leagues and is known for 2 unmemorable things. First, he played for the 1919 Black Sox team that threw the World Series that year. Second, while in the minors he gave up future HOF'er Tony Lazzeri's 60th home run (2 years before Ruth reached 60 in the majors). Jim Shellenback turns 59 today.

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