Even though Tony Perez was correctly shown as a Montreal Expos player in the OPC and Topps Cloth sets of 1977, he was still a Cincinnati Reds player on his "regular" Topps card.
So with that in mind I went and designed a "Traded" card for him as part of my traded thread.
Take a look:
Perez was sent to Montreal along with pitcher Will McEnaney for two guys out of the bullpen: Woodie Fryman and Dale Murray.
Now, I don't really remember the reasoning for this trade (Tony! Help me out here!), but it seems ABSURD all these years later.
Nevertheless, the "Big Dog" kept on producing for the next four years (three with the Expos and one with the Boston Red Sox in 1980) before becoming a solid veteran bat off the bench between 1982 and 1986 with Boston, Philadelphia and back in Cincinnati before retiring.
All told, he put together a magnificent 23 years career, collecting over 2700 hits, 375 home runs, 1600 runs batted in, and a .279 lifetime batting average.
He was also named to seven all-star teams and got Most Valuable Player attention in seven seasons.
It took a long while, but he was eventually elected into the Hall of Fame in 2000, joining former teammates Joe Morgan, Sparky Anderson and Johnny Bench, with Dave Concepcion and Pete Rose still out in the cold.
As I've stated earlier on this blog, I was always fascinated that former "Big Red Machine" skipper Anderson considered the Perez trade a severe blow to the Reds' continued dominance of Major League ball after 1976.
Here's a team that pretty much had their entire squad intact, and even picked up TOM SEAVER in June of 1977, but could never make it back to the top of the baseball world.
A good idea of how important Perez was…