April 15, 2017 is a very special day for Major League Baseball and the KC Royals. Jackie Robinson Day is a day to celebrate the path that Jackie Robinson set for many baseball players.
Obviously, Jackie Robinsons #42 is no longer issued on MLB uniforms after every team had retired the #42 in 1997. In this piece, I will take a look at some of the KC Royals that have worn that number on the back of their uniform.
Al Fitzmorris – 1969
Anybody that remembers Al Fitzmorris may remember that he mainly wore #39 in his KC Royals career. But in 1969, the KC Royals first year as a franchise, Al Fitzmorris wore #42 briefly.
Fitzmorris only appeared in 7 gamers that year though, with all those appearances coming in relief. Fitzmorris got his first career win with that number on his back though. That would spark a run of many too, as he has 70 of those, ninth in KC Royals history.
Chris Zachary – 1969
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The average KC Royals fan definitely won’t remember right-handed pitcher Chris Zachary. Making his major league debut at the young age of 19 in 1963 with the Houston Colt .45’s, Zachary would make appearances in both the rotation and bullpen for Houston.
Zachary would bounce between the majors and minors for years. Then, after being left out of the majors for about two years, Zachary would find himself on the roster of the brand new Kansas City Royals in 1969.
That period of time wasn’t to kind to Zachary though. Zachary only appeared in 8 games with the KC Royals, 2 starts, struggling mightily. He gave up 16 earned runs 18.1 innings.
Keith Marshall – 1973
Another unknown Royal, Keith Marshall almost surely remembers his brief time with the KC Royals, as it was his only stint in the majors.
A minor league outfielder since the club’s birth, the light hitting Marshall finally made his debut in 1973.
He played in 8 games that year, receiving 10 plate appearances. He recorded 2 hits.
Buck Martinez – 1973
After a couple of cups of coffee with the KC Royals in 1969,1970, and 1971, Buck Martinez didn’t see time with the Royals again until 1973.
Martinez only played in 14 games that year. He posted an OPS+ of 95 in limited time.
Tom Hall – 1976, 1977
A lefty swingman, Tom Hall some very successful years with the Minnesota Twins and Cincinnati Reds in that 1960s and early 1970s.
After a quick stint with the New York Mets, Hall came over to the KC Royals in a trade.
He pitched in 37 games for the Royals between 1976 and 1977, going 1-1 with a 4.26 ERA.
Tom Goodwin – 1995, 1996, 1997
The only full-time player to where #42 for the Royals is Tom Goodwin. He came over to the Royals after an unsuccessful start to a career with the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Goodwin played 375 games for the Royals in his prime. He had has best batting average , best slugging percentage, and most home runs with the Royals.
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Goodwin was traded away mid-1997 to the Texas Rangers, where he switched his number to 24.