Saturday, October 26, 2013

DEDICATED "ROOKIE CARDS" #4: 1975 JIM RICE

Today's dedicated rookie card goes to Hall of Famer Jim Rice, who's first card was one of those lame multi-player jammies I was never a fan of. (see below).
1975 turned out to be one of the better sets, if not THE best set of the decade when it came to Hall of Fame rookies (Gary Carter, Robin Yount, George Brett), and joining that superstar crew was Rice in 2009 with his induction to the Hall.
Sadly, unlike Brett and Yount, who had their own dedicated rookie cards, Rice was lumped in with the likes of Dave Augustine, Pepe Mangual and John Scott on HIS card, leaving us with a ho-hum rookie of one of the most feared sluggers of the era.
It's funny, because I remember back in 1983 or so, it was the Fred Lynn rookie of the same set that was all the rage, and I must proudly say that I was buying up all the Jim Rice rookies I came across since I thought HE was the future Hall of Famer with the stats he was putting up year after year.
But a card like the one I designed below would have been awesome to have as his initial cardboard slab! Hope you like it too…
 
Remember any of the other three guys?

A monster unleashing at the plate.
 
I'm STILL amazed with Rice's run from 1977 through 1979! Even though he only pulled in one M.V.P., he was an absolute terror at the plate.
Over 200 hits each year, along with 39, 46 and 39 homers, as well as averaging 124 runs batted in and a .320 average.
Then you notice that the dude hit 15, 15 and 6 TRIPLES those years, leading the league in homers AND triples in 1978.
I mean, that is just plain RAKING at the plate!
Man, Rice used to terrify me as a young Yankee fan. He was just plain brutal to opposing pitchers, and it was a shame that he had to wait so long to get elected into Cooperstown. 
Now if only Dave Parker and Steve Garvey can get some love from the Veteran's Committee in the future, THEN we'll be cooking with gas!
Time will tell…

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