Saturday, October 31, 2015

626th Place - Bill Wegman

Card #538

Trick or treat
Smell my feet
Wegman's not known
For his heat.

Happy Halloween Topps fans - I'm a little annoyed my viewing of game four of the World Series tonight is going to be constantly interrupted by candy-crazy kids.  I'm even more annoyed that I'm interested in watching, as the Mets and especially this Royals team are of no interest to me. But they're playing some pretty good ball against each other, and I'm getting sucked in by it.  I will be rooting, though, for the combined batting average of both teams in this game to be at .278, my pick for Nightowl's generous contest.

Do you think Wegman ever dressed up as Dirty Harry for Halloween?  Maybe it's just me, but I think it looks like Clint Eastwood just put on a Milwaukee jersey and asked hitters if they felt lucky.  Well, do ya, punks?

Wegman spent all eleven of his seasons as a Brewer, starting over 200 games for them in that span.  Minus a two year span in 1991-92, he was never particularly good, but he was durable and present, which are skills in and of themselves.  Here's a link where he shares his Christian testimony.  Maybe that's appropriate for a night like this...

Friday, October 23, 2015

627th Place - John Christensen

Card #413

Christensen is a ballplayer who came oh-so-close to being a part of both teams from the 1986 World Series.  He spent time in the majors and minors for the Mets in 1985, and was then traded to the Red Sox that off season in the same deal that sent Calvin Schiraldi to Boston.  But Christensen spent all of 1986 in Pawtucket, stuck in AAA ball while Bean Town tried to erase their Babe Ruth curse. Alas, we know how that turned out...

He did find success in his college days, winning the World Series with Cal-State Fullerton in 1979 on a team that included future big leaguers Tim Wallach and Andre David.

I think this is a pretty good looking baseball card, it's only ranked so low due to the obscurity of the player featured. No offense meant towards Mr. Christensen...

Saturday, October 17, 2015

628th Place - Bill Dawley

Card #509

I've mentioned before that my other blog revolves around the board game Statis Pro Baseball and my attempt to replay the 1984 season.  I've played roughly 20% of the season so far, and one of the very best relievers has been Bill Dawley, who in the real 1984 had a filthy year coming out of the Houston Astros bullpen.  In that campaign he posted a 1.93 ERA in 98 innings, including eleven wins and five saves.  The year prior, 1983, Dawley made the All-Star team as a rookie, despite starting the year in the minor leagues.  He relieved Atlee Hammaker, who got shelled in the game.

Dawley would only play twelve more games between the 1988 and 89 seasons at the major league level before retiring.  If I'm not mistaken, you could talk to him about securing a mortgage these days.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

629th Place - Mark Ryal

Card #243

Ryal was born in the mighty metropolis of Henryetta, OK. He's spent a large portion of his post-playing days as a women's softball coach.  After a stint as an assistant coach at Auburn and South Alabama, he returned to his native Oklahoma and the OSU team.

Ryal the player was your classic AAA minor leaguer who struggled to stick in the majors.  He eventually ended up in Japan for a couple of years in the early 90's.  What's crazy is that his son, Rusty, has had almost the same kind of trajectory.  Rusty has the distinction of being the last major league hitter to take Randy Johnson deep.

Still, though, this is a sharp looking card.  The 3D effect of the bat in front of the team name is cool, and the Angels have one of the better color designs in the set.  If you'd like to connect with Mark on social media, try his LinkedIn account.