1989 Donruss – Pat Borders
So, we are now well into Movember, and a lot of people look creepy. Pat Borders, the 1992 World Series MVP, is something of a mentor – a legend, if you will – for anyone with a creepy mustache.
A few things you might not know about Pat Borders, besides the fact he thought he looked really, really good in the photo for this baseball card:
-Played for six different teams with whom he played just one season with 150 or fewer at-bats. Dude got around.
-Won a gold medal with Team USA at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney.
-Was still playing Major League baseball (well, he was playing in Seattle, so Major League is up for debate) in 2005 at the age of 42.
Movember, keeping ordinary people away from toy stores and elementary schools in November for over a decade.
PS. donate to Movember.
2012 Topps – Charlie Furbush
Charlie Furbush is proof that impressive names in sport are not restricted to previous generations, but are, in fact, for the modern man as well.
His name might not stay a secret for long, because he’s pretty good, but mostly because his name is Charlie Furbush. Furbush. Come on, universe. Don’t give me stuff like this. Challenge me.
Although, let’s be honest, a name like this probably would have been more appropriate in, say, the 1970’s. Think about it. It’ll make sense soon.
1981 Fleer- Maury Wills
Maury Wills is remembered as a Dodger – one who stole a lot of bases, played some decent shortstop, and helped them win three World Series titles in 1959, 1963 and 1965.
He’s not often remembered as a Major League Manager, nor is he remembered as a Seattle Mariner. However, he was in fact the Mariners’ Manager for 83 glorious games in the last part of the 1980 season and the early part of the 1981 season. In his book entitled “Rob Neyer’s Big Book of Baseball Blunders,” author Neyer writes that Wills might have been the worst manager of all time. That’s saying something. There have been some bad managers.
Wills also played a little bit for Pittsburgh and Montreal, but something about seeing him in a Seattle uniform just doesn’t work.
2012 Topps Archives – Ichiro
I don’t particularly like the Seattle Mariners. While I don’t have a specific hate on for them or wish them any type of ill-will, for the most part, I enjoy that they are the less successful expansion cousins of 1977 and haven’t really done anything of consequence in the postseason – ever.
However, I like Ichiro Suzuki. He has been unique to his generation, and probably unique to all of baseball history. He’s been a lot of fun to watch, and we are fortunate to have been able to watch it from the sidelines and our living rooms.
It is for this reason that I am not happy about Ichiro’s trade to the Evil Empire of the New York Yankees today, even if he’s a shadow of what he once was and even if it made sense for the Mariners to move on. I would prefer to remember Ichiro wearing Seattle’s colours – their somehow enduring teal and blue colours – and not this god-awful mess of Yankee nonsense:
I’m sorry Ichiro, but I now wish for you to fail at baseball for as long as you are a Yankee.
1992 Donruss Triple Play – Junior Felix
While it appears that this is a baseball card of Pete O’Brien’s ass, in actuality, it is not. In one of the worst photography selections of all time, this was actually chosen as the photo for a baseball card of Junior Felix.
You might remember Junior Felix. He hit a home run in his first Major League at bat, caught the final out of Dave Stieb’s no hitter, made Blue Jays fans think he could be a superstar for a while (see current example: Yan Gomes), and then, well, that’s about it.
1985 Topps - Randy Johnson
1991 Topps - Randy Johnson
Apparently there were two Randy Johnsons that played in the Major Leagues in the 1980’s. The first one to crack an MLB roster was Randall Glenn Johnson, who played a total of 204 games with the Atlanta Braves from 1982-1984.
The second had a bit more success, as Randall David Johnson won 303 games with six teams, including the dirty, awful Yankees, striking out 4875 total batters.
How we know they’re different people:
The Randy Johnson who achieved utility player status with the Atlanta Braves is listed at 6 feet 1 inch tall. The Randy Johnson who broke in with the Expos and achieved fame and fortune with the Seattle Mariners is 6 feet 10 inches tall. This made him the tallest Major Leaguer in history until Jon Rauch took his talents to the South Side of Chicago. You can tell how tall he is based on the photograph on his 1991 Topps card. The photographer was obviously much shorter, or maybe just creepy.
How we’re not sure they’re different people because we’ve never seen them in the same room together:
Both are from California and played the latter parts of their careers in Phoenix (Randall Glenn with the old Phoenix Firebirds of the PCL, and Randall David with the Arizona Diamondbacks, in both the purple and post-purple eras). They also both had mustaches. Coincidence? I think not.
Confusion alleviated? No big deal.
1987 Donruss - Karl Best
Karl Best was not the best. In fact, he wasn’t really even one of the best. Wikipedia tells us that his best MLB appearance ever was 4 2/3 innings of scoreless relief during a 14-1 loss to the Minnesota Twins. Give the guy a break though… that’s a tough name to live up to. Did you ever pitch in the majors? No? Then shut up.
1991 Score - Ken Griffey Sr.
1991 Score - Ken Griffey Jr.
I know, pretty unoriginal to talk about the Griffeys on Father’s Day, but fuck it, I think it’s worth a mention. Of all the odds you’d have to beat to play in the Major Leagues with your dad/son, the Griffeys did it and even hit back to back homers once.
1991 Score - The Griffeys
Pretty impressive, and a cheesy Father and Son card thrown in for good measure.
Once again, 1991 Score coming through in the clutch. Don’t act like you’re not impressed.
Happy Father’s Day 2011, everyone.