Who is this? Albert Walter "Sparky" Lyle, a former relief pitcher for the Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees, Texas Rangers, Philadelphia Phillies and Chicago White Sox
What is this? An autographed card from the 2006 Somerset Patriots team set
Where'd I get it? I got the card signed at a team autograph session before a Somerset Patriots game in 2006.
How much did it cost? The card set was around $5; the autograph was free
Why is this so special? Sparky Lyle was one of the most dominant relievers of the 1970s. He was a three-time All-Star and won the 1977 Cy Young Award.
Lyle pitched in an era when relievers were expected to pitch for more than one inning if needed, so six times in his career he pitched more than 100 innings in a season. He earned 238 saves in his career, and helped the Yankees earn a World Series trophy in 1977.
Since 1998, Lyle has managed the independent league Somerset Patriots in Bridgewater, N.J. He has won five Atlantic League titles.
Lyle has a very clear and distinct autograph.