Tuesday, February 4, 2014

WSC Vintage: Tink Riviere

Card #49 - Tink Riviere

Arthur Bernard Riviere, better known as "Tink", was a student at the University of Texas, when the St. Louis Cardinals invited him to their 1921 spring training. The Cardinals seemed impressed with Tink's record twenty-two strikeouts in a game. If Riviere made the team, he would receive a $3,000 salary. The Bismark Tribune in North Dakota was taken by the Cardinals' young, strong pitchers. The writers singled out Arthur as being the cream of the crop among the promising young hurlers, three days before his MLB debut against the Cubs at Wrigley Field.

Tink appeared in the starting rotation to begin the season, but found himself in the bullpen full time by May 1921 and eventually devolved into a mop up reliever during losses. Riviere racked up a dismal 6.10 ERA in eighteen games in his first season. He walked twenty and struck out fifteen in thirty-eight and a third innings. It wasn't the stuff of twenty-two strikeout games.

Riviere pitched in the American Association and the International League minors before catching on with the Chicago White Sox in 1925. He appeared in only three games in July 1925 for the Pale Hose, pitching only four and two-thirds innings. Tink's stats with the Cardinals were closer to his record collegiate games than his days with Chicago. Riviere gave up six hits, seven earned runs, seven walks and managed to strikeout one with a 13.50 ERA in those three games. Manager Eddie Collins had seen enough and pulled the plug.

From 1926 until 1931, Tink pitched in the Texas League for various teams. Despite being on teams that were affiliates of the Detroit Tigers and the St. Louis Cardinals during that time, Riviere never again pitched at the MLB level.

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