I always got a kick out of New York Met Art Shamsky's 1971 Topps card (#445).
Once again you have to wonder why Topps, who presumably had some options when it came to photos for players, decided to use a shot of Shamsky at the plate getting brushed back by a pitch.
Take a look:
Not a bad action shot, but why this particular moment?
I guess it was "different", and that's always a good thing in my book.
But the shot from behind, with Shamsky contorting out of the way of the incoming pitch was a bit odd of a choice.
I cannot for the life of me figure out who the opposing team is from the catcher. Does anyone know? I'm guessing the Astros like a lot of the Mets cards from the set.
As for Shamsky, he had an eight year career that left a couple of lasting marks on the game.
He was a part of the "Miracle Mets" team that won it all in 1969, hitting .300 as a platoon player manning the outfield and first base.
It was a pretty solid year for him, as he also hit 14 homers and drove in 47 runs with only 303 at-bats.
He even led the team in hitting for the NLCS, batting .538 helping the Mets make it to the Fall Classic.
A few years before that, he also had a bat sent to the Hall of Fame for being (to this day) the only player to hit three home runs in a game in which he did not start!
That happened back on August 12th of 1966 when he played with the Cincinnati Reds, the team he came up with.
Inserted as part of a double-switch in the eighth inning, he hit a homer in the bottom of the eighth, bottom of the 10th and bottom of the eleventh.
Each homer extended the game for the Reds, though they ended up losing to the Pirates 14-11 in 13 innings.
However by 1972 he was out of the Majors after 23 games with the Cubs and A's, and he finished his career with a .253 average, 68 homers and 233 runs batted in.
Later on he became (among other things) a broadcaster with the Mets, and even managed a team in the Israeli Baseball league in 2007.