Sunday, July 20, 2014

673rd Place - Brian Fisher

Card #193

Two words:  Sweaty bangs.

When my brother and I were kids, and we noticed the other needed a haircut, we would start singing, "If I had wings I could fly...," which is a line from Warren G's Regulate.  The wings, in this case, would be the locks of hair sticking out over our ears. 

Brian Fisher must be a Warren G fan.

Here's a fun article where Fisher gets to recount his playing days, especially the insanity that ensues when George Steinbrenner is your owner.  Sadly, it also notes the loss of one of Fisher's sons to cerebral palsy.

You might notice my copy of Fisher's card features an ink blot around the A and the T of Pirates.  I'm assuming that wasn't a consistent feature in the printing of this card.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

674th Place - Mark Knudson

Card #61

Argh!!!  Why the black t-shirt with white lettering under the Brewers jersey, why!?!?!?!  It's Topps picture day, middle-aged bloggers 25+ years from now will turn a critical eye on your fashion sense, think ahead!!!

Mark stuck his neck out recently about homosexual athletes and teammates.  You can read his opinions here.  It made enough waves for the Huffington Post to take notice.  It looks like he's part of a sports media group now, you can follow him on Twitter too.

Knudson the ballplayer stuck around the majors off and on through the 1993 season, though he was never terribly effective. 

Saturday, July 5, 2014

675th Place - Bill Long

Card #309

I had a friend in college named Richard B. Long.  Think about it for a second.

As far as profile pictures go, this is just fine.  Those red warm-ups don't look good behind the hot pink banners, though.  One can't help but wonder what Bill is focusing his gaze upon. 

I found next to nothing on Bill on the old inter-webs.  He hung around for six years, mostly with the White Sox.  I'll be nominating this post as the most boring since we started with the checklists...

Thursday, June 19, 2014

676th Place - Marvell Wynne

Card #454

I always loved Marvell's name.  There has to be some sort of positive impact on a kid's chances to become a professional athlete when they've got an awesome moniker.  That's science.

It's appropriate that we're discussing Marvell this week since we're also in the middle of the World Cup.  Did you know his son, Marvell Wynne Jr., is a soccer player in MLS?  See - great name, increased odds to go pro!

Marvell Sr. had a promising start to his MLB career in Pittsburgh, appearing in 154 games for the Pirates in 1984, his second season.  He would never duplicate that playing time or success though, and was out of baseball after the 1990 season when he struggled with the Chicago Cubs.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

677th Place - Steve Kiefer

Card #187

Some of you know I have a second blog, where I'm replaying the 1984 MLB season using Statis Pro Baseball.  Besides using this entry as a gratuitous plug for that blog, I mention it because Kiefer was terrible in 1984, his first cup of coffee in the bigs.  In Statis Pro, his defensive rating is the worst possible, and his hitting numbers are dismal.

By 1987, not much had changed.

Kiefer got a couple of more chances to play in 1988 and 1989, but after that, he was gone.  He has a negative 1.6 career WAR according to Baseball Reference, which is hard to do in only 229 career at-bats.

Despite all that, this is actually a pretty nice looking card.  It's only ranked so low due to quality of the player.  (No offense intended to Mr. Kiefer)

Monday, May 26, 2014

678th Place - Ken Schrom

Card #256

In my mind Ken is the epitome of the mid-1980's number five starter.  The innings eater who got shelled a little too hard but managed to stick around a bit to endure the beating.  He even looks weary as he goes into his windup.

Sadly for Schrom, this card would be his last as a player.  He wrapped up his career after the 1987 season, probably because of that 6.50 ERA he sported for Cleveland.

Here's a nice segment he taped recently recounting his experience as an AL All-Star:

Sunday, May 25, 2014

679th Place - Tim Crews

Card #57

There's a weird glitch with this baseball card.  The photo editor didn't do a good job of setting the "G" in Dodgers completely behind Tim's head, leading to some pink spilling onto his cap.

I'm just stalling, though, because I don't want to write about the tragic death of Tim Crews.  As most of you reading this will remember, Tim Crews and Steve Olin, teammates on the Cleveland Indians, died in a boating accident that also severely injured Bob Ojeda.
The accident was all the more tragic, and frustrating, because Crews was operating the boat under the influence of alcohol.

Here's a great article catching up with Crews and Olin's families, twenty years after their loss.