I think I've mentioned this before, but even as a die-hard Yankee fan growing upon the 1970's and 1980's, I LOVED Tom Seaver, I was in AWE of Seaver, and I used to wish more than anything that he was a New York Yankee.
He just seemed other-worldy, and his baseball cards took on mythic stature in my young mind every year.
So I'm psyched, even some 35 years later, to design anything with Tom Seaver on it.
Today is one of those days, as I present a card that would have been awesome, had Topps cared to highlight historical events consistently through the decade of the 1970's: a 1971 card celebrating his 19-strikeout game, tying the all-time mark set just a year earlier by Steve Carlton, ironically enough against Seaver's own team, the Mets.
But first take a look at my card design:
Just a year after Carlton whiffed 19 Mets (even though the Mets won that game), Seaver matched the all-time mark on April 22nd, and in stunning fashion, striking out the final TEN San Diego Padres to finish with his 19 K's.
On top of all that, those ten strikeouts in a row are STILL the Major League high for consecutive K's in a game.
It was pure vintage Seaver, and those 19 strikeouts contributed to the 283 he totaled for the year, the National League leader in that department.
He'd also pace the N.L. in E.R.A., posting a league-low 2.82, while going 18-12 over 36 starts with a couple of shutouts.
If you're like me, there can never be enough cards of Tom Seaver in his prime, and hopefully I can come up with other reasons to create more "Tom Terrific" cardboard…