So here's an interesting one for all of you.
Seems that former player Danny Walton went five years between cards from 1973 to 1978, so he makes for a subject for my "Long Time No See" thread.
However, when you take a look at his stats and see his playing time the years immediately before each card, you have to wonder why Topps even bothered in the first place!
Making Walton more of a "What Were They Thinking" subject over anything else.
Even though Topps gave him a slot in their 1973 set (card # 516), turns out Walton never even played in the Majors the previous year, 1972.
And on top of that he only saw action in 35 games in 1971, good for only 91 plate appearances split between the Milwaukee Brewers and New York Yankees.
So why would he get a card in 1973, shown here?:
We then have to wait until 1978 to see another slab of cardboard depicting Walton, this time as a Houston Astros player, after appearing in only 13 games totaling 21 plate appearances in 1977.
Here's the '78 card (#263):
Let's not even delve into the airbrushing job here…
What's most interesting is the fact that if we were to go by his playing time in both 1971 and 1977, then Walton was "missing" in the 1972, 1974 and 1976 sets since he saw more playing time the previous years, warranting a card.
Strange how it really was a crap shoot with some of these guys (Hector Torres comes to mind), where they'd get a card that was questionable, yet go "missing" when you think they would have had one.
As for Walton, he managed to carve out a sporadic nine-year career spanning 1968 to 1980, usually as a player off the bench who could play some infield and outfield.
In those nine years he totaled 297 games and 880 plate appearances, eeking out a .223 average with 28 homers and 107 ribbies.
I don't want to rag on they guy, but his batting averages between 1971 and 1977 were as follows: .193, (no MLB in '72), .177, (no MLB in '74), .175, .133 and .190.