With the nickname of "The Cobra" and a look that screamed, "badass," Dave Parker was one of the most popular baseball players of the late 70s and early 80s, and that was not just in Pittsburgh.
Parker debuted in 1973 and was the Pirates starting Rightfielder two years later, with his first 20 HR, 100 RBI, .300 year. Parker was third in MVP voting that season and was third again in 1977, where he won the Gold Glove and won the Batting Title (.338), led the NL in Hits (215) and Doubles (44). He won his second Batting Title (.334) and Slugging Title in 1978 (.585), captured a second Gold Glove, and won the coveted MVP. As good as this was, there were more peaks to come.
The Cobra helped lead the Pirates to a World Series win in 1979, with Parker delivering another All-Star and Gold Glove year. While Parker was voted into the All-Star Game the next two years, the bloom was off the rose. He was beset by injuries, weight problems, but mostly excessive cocaine use, which cost him Games as well as Hits. Parker arguably did not have a great year as a Pirate in the 1980s.
Parker signed with the Reds as a Free Agent with Cincinnati before the 1984 Season, and he had an up-and-down career after that, often brilliant, and often disappointing. With the Pirates, he had 1,479 Hits, 166 Home Runs, 758 RBIs, and a Slash Line of .305/.353/.494, though the common belief is that he should have had more.