*Italian Heritage Doubtful/Unlikely
Card: 1976 Topps #319
Born in Joliet, Illinois, Lawrence Cyril Gura was a former pitcher who spent 16 years in the Major Leagues. He played for the Chicago Cubs (1970–1973, 1985) of the National League, and the New York Yankees (1974–1975) and Kansas City Royals (1976–1985), both of the American League. He was inducted into the inaugural Joliet Hall of Fame in Joliet, Illinois, and he is also in the KC Royals Hall of Fame.
Larry is noted on his SABR page as being of "Slovak" descent, and despite what has been said is not of Italian American heritage.
He was elected to the American League All-Star team in 1980 (00:02:00) when he had his finest season, finishing with an 18–10 record and a 2.95 ERA. Gura won in double figures for seven consecutive seasons for the Royals (1978–1984) compiling 99 wins over that span. He particularly pestered his former team, the Yankees, against whom he went 11–6 in the regular season as a Royal. Larry was 3–0 against them in both 1979 and 1980, with five complete games, and tossed another complete-game victory against the Yankees in the 1980 American League Championship Series.
Larry was named Royals pitcher of the year two times. He was the Royals' starting pitcher for Games 2 and 5 of the 1980 World Series. He was also an exceptional fielding pitcher, committing only 7 errors in 483 total chances for a career .986 fielding percentage.
Gura is understood to have been a health innovator. “He was a pioneer in baseball, a fanatic about nutrition and weight training, years before it became commonplace for all ballplayers to pay attention to such matters,” said longtime Royals broadcaster Steve Stewart in 2008.
In his Letters from Home Plate response, Larry lists Whitey Ford as his favorite player growing up, and "Punch & Judy" hitters as the toughest he ever faced.
*Larry is also part of the Italian Ancestry Unsure/Doubtful Tour – Next Page
Larry is part of the Topps Card Tour – 1976 Topps – Go to the Next Stop
Larry is also part of the Born in Chicago Tour – Next Stop
Larry is part of the All-Star Player Tour – Go to the Next Stop
Larry is also part of the New York Yankee Players Tour – Go To the Next Stop
Larry is also part of the Chicago Cubs Players Tour – Go To the Next Stop
See all of Gura’s baseball cards at TCDB
Visit a random Italian American MLB player: