Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Jeff Newman #517 (Baseballs 1st Fantasy Draft)

A nice looking vibrant card. The A's uniform really stands out. I remember Newman as being one of those A's that got a chance to play because all the A's stars left during free agency in 1977. I believe that all of this Fantasy Sports really derived from the Free Agent Draft that took place in November of 1976. When the top stars such as Reggie Jackson, Joe Rudi, Sal Bando became free agents at the end of the 1976 season, Baseball set up a free agent draft. It worked this way, I believe. Each Team could pick a free agent player to negotiated with. Any team could pick any player in the draft, however once 14 teams picked a player in a draft no other teams could pick that player. I remember the Pittsburgh Pirates picking Reggie Jackson with their first pick I believe (obviously 13 other teams including the Yankees picked Jackson). I think a team could only sign 2 or 3 of the free agents they picked (or they could only pick 2 or 3 free agents or something like that). I remember seeing in the papers the next day after the draft and seeing the names of the players and what 14 teams that picked them. It was kind of unusual. I think the papers may have listed the teams and what players they picked. In essence it was a fantasy draft as you could imagine if your team acquired all the players they drafted. I think that was the only year the baseball free agent draft worked that way.


  1. Awesome history lesson... never knew about the Free Agent Draft of 1976.

    However... I remember Newman had a few seasons with the A's in the early 80's where he was hitting homers left and right.

  2. Couple of notes- Toronto and Seattle (the expansion teams) were not allowed to participate. Teams could select as many players to negotiate with as they wanted, except that when a player was selected by 12 teams other than his own, he was removed from the list. There were 22 players on the list, six from the A's and four from the O's (including Reggie).

  3. Thanks Jeff, for clarifying the rules of the draft.