Astros in the Sky
The Deadball Era
Born: Oct 22, 1942
A reliever with a sweeping underhand delivery, Upshaw came up with the Braves and eventually became their closer. He saved 27 games in their division-winning season of 1969. One night while walking with a teammate, he raised his arm while demonstrating a basketball move and accidentally ripped a finger on his pitching hand on an overhead sign. He was never quite the same pitcher after that.
The Braves traded him to the Astros in 1973 for outfielder Norm Miller. Upshaw was 2-3 with one save and a 4.46 ERA for Houston then was traded in the winter to Cleveland. He finished his career with the Yankees and White Sox. Overall, he had a 34-36 with 86 saves and a 3.13 ERA in nine seasons.
Upshaw passed away on February 7th, 1995 of a heart attack in Lawrenceville, GA, at the age of 53.