Wednesday, August 31, 2016


Here’s a “missing” 1970 card for Seattle Pilot player Gus Gil, who I also created a “missing” 1971 card for earlier on this blog:

Gil appeared in 92 games for Seattle in their sole season as a Major League franchise, batting .222 with 49 hits in 221 at-bats along with 20 runs scored and 17 runs batted in.
With 241 plate appearances, how did this guy NOT get a Topps card in 1970?
Nevertheless, Gil spent 4 years in the Majors, batting .186 with 87 hits over 468 at-bats, playing all four infield positions over the course of 221 games.
He also spent 16 years in the Minor Leagues, starting as a 20-year old in 1959 in the Cincinnati Reds system and playing straight through to the 1976 season for the Poza Rica organization in the Mexican League, batting .274 with over 1500 hits.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016


Once again “Reader Jim” asked me to redesign a card for his 1976 Project, this one for Willie Davis, who was originally on an airbrushed San Diego Padres card in the 1976 Topps set, but re-done with him as a St. Louis Cardinal, for whom he played the second half of 1975:

A nice action shot of “3-Dog”, who was finishing up an excellent 18-year career in the late-70’s, the first 14 of them as a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers, including 2 championships in 1963 and 1965.
The last four years of his career were divided among the Montreal Expos (1974), Texas Rangers (1975), Cardinals (1975) and California Angels in 1979 (he didn’t play in 1977/1978).
All told the man collected 2561 hits and a .279 batting average, along with three Gold Gloves, 182 homers, 398 stolen bases, 138 triples and 1217 runs scored over 2429 games.
Excellent numbers for a guy who is easily lost among the elite National League outfielders of his day like Aaron, Mays and Clemente.

Monday, August 29, 2016


Here’s a “missing” 1973 card for former Texas Ranger Marty Martinez, who was wrapping up a seven-year career in 1972:

Martinez appeared in 57 games during the ’72 season, split between three teams: St. Louis Cardinals, Oakland A’s and Texas Rangers, hitting .159 with 14 hits in 88 at-bats, with six runs batted in and runs scored.
Originally up in the Majors at the age of 20 with the Minnesota Twins in 1962, he wouldn’t make it back to the big show until 1967, now with the  Atlanta Braves for a couple of years before moving on to the Houston Astros until his well-traveled final season of ’72.
For his career he hit .243 with 230 hits over 945 at-bats in 436 games, collecting 57 RBI’s and scoring 97 runs with 19 doubles and 11 triples.

Sunday, August 28, 2016


As if Willie Mays needed anything other accomplishment to cement his place as one of the greatest players the game has ever seen, on April 30, 1961 he poured it on when he hit four home runs in one game, the Milwaukee Braves being the victim of his latest offensive onslaught:

Mays was pretty much in his prime in the early 60’s, and this game was a clear sign of his dominance against National League pitchers, as he became the seventh player to accomplish the feat in the 14-4 Giants win.
All he did that day was go 4-5 with the four home runs and eight runs batted in. Not a bad day’s worth, especially when you take into account that he wasn’t even going to play that day because of his jaunt the night before with Willie McCovey to eat ribs!
The man was a baseball machine!

Saturday, August 27, 2016


Today I’d like to focus on a very nice airbrushing job Topps put out there, the 1978 Rich Gossage card, getting him as a New York Yankee after coming over from the Pittsburgh Pirates:

Gossage was a huge pick up for the reliever-rich Yanks, as they already had former Cy Young winner Sparky Lyle, leading to one of my favorite baseball-quips of all-time: “You went from Cy Young to sayonara”, uttered by the jokester Graig Nettles to Lyle, as the writing was on the wall.
By the time the 1979 season opened Lyle was a Texas Ranger, and Gossage was closing in the Bronx straight through the 1983 season, becoming one of the best closers in Yankee history.
As for the card, Topps really did do a nice job getting the uniform as realistic as possible in this action shot, about as smooth a job as I can recollect. It had me fooled as a kid when I ripped the card out of a pack for the first time.
It’s definitely on-par with cards like the 1978 Elliot Maddox or 1976 Nelson Briles cards, even the 1977 Doyle Alexander and 1973 Davey Johnson.

Friday, August 26, 2016


Here’s a “missing” 1974 card for former pitcher Wayne Simpson, who burst on to the Major League scene in 1970 as a member of the Cincinnati Reds, but because of injuries never found that initial success later on:

Four years removed from his fantastic rookie year, Simpson found himself in Kansas City, trying to hang on and pitch through injuries that derailed his career, one that saw him go 14-3 with a 3.02 earned run average and league-leading .824 winning percentage as a member of the pennant winning Reds team in 1970.
For the Royals in 1973 he would go 3-4, with a 5.73 ERA over 16 appearances, 10 of which were starts, with a complete game and 29 K’s over 59.2 innings.
Sadly for him, he would only pitch a handful of games in 1975 for the Phillies, then make somewhat of a comeback in 1977 with the California Angels, which saw him go 6-12 with a 5.83 ERA over 27 games, 23 as a starter.
But that would be it for him, and at the age of 28 he would never see Major League action again.
His 1970 season was one of those rookie splashes up there with Von McDaniel, Mark Fidrych and Herb Score, enough so that he would still be a figure baseball magazines would write about years later as far as a young arm making an immediate impact.
Sadly like so many of those other young studs, it was something that they couldn’t maintain through no fault of their own.

Thursday, August 25, 2016


Today I post a “re-do” of former pitcher Mike Garman’s 1976 Topps card, which was originally an airbrushed to show him on his new team, the Chicago Cubs, for which “Reader Jim” wanted a St. Louis Cardinal version to reflect the team he suited up for in 1975.
First up, the original:

Now the redesigned card with the Cardinals:

As I’ve stated before, I have always thought of a year’s baseball card set as more of a “yearbook” of sorts for everything that happened the previous year, and agree with Jim that having cards reflect that seem to make more sense.
Of course the other side of the argument is just as valid and I do see the reasoning, but nevertheless I am more than happy to accommodate Jim and what he asked me to create.
Garman put together a nice ‘75 season in St. Louis, posting a 3-8 record which wasn’t indicative of his 2.39 earned run average with 10 saves in 66 appearances and 79 innings pitched.
He would pitch for nine-years in the Major Leagues, collecting 42 saves and 22 wins (against 27 losses) generally out of the bullpen, as only eight of his career 303 games were as a starter.
He’d also finish with a 3.63 ERA and 213 strikeouts in 433.2 innings, with his only postseason action coming in 1977 as a member of the National League champ Los Angeles Dodgers.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016


Hello Everyone,
For those interested, the second issue of “wthballs” arrived, and it features all my “Missing in Action” 1970 cards to date from the blog.
Once again it comes in at 24-pages, full-color from cover to cover, and has players such as Don Drysdale, Bill White, Ken Boyer as well as the obscure guys like Van Kelly, Jim Mason and Steve Jones.
As with the first issue, it’s $7 postpaid and you can paypal me at:
Let me know if you want one and I’ll put it aside!
As for those who have already pre-paid, they will go out Friday afternoon (next trip to the P.O.)
Thank you all and take care,


Today I post up a “missing” 1975 card for former New York Yankee (for a short time anyway) Fernando Gonzalez, who came over to the Bronx from the Kansas City Royals during the 1974 season:

Gonzalez Played in 60 games in 1974, the first nine with KC before finding himself in New York with the Yanks, hitting for a cumulative .204 average, with 29 hits in 142 at-bats.
After missing out on Major League play the next two seasons he’d make it back, now with the team he originally came up with, the Pittsburgh Pirates, before moving on to the San Diego padres where he would play until 1979, his last year in the Majors.
In his six seasons in the big show he would hit .235 with 244 hits in 1038 at-bats over 404 games, with 17 homers and 104 runs batted in along with 85 runs scored

Tuesday, August 23, 2016


Let’s close out the “Fantasy” Koufax series with a 1972 “In-Action card of the lefty legend shall we? I used a horizontal format for some in-game action for the fellow Brooklyn-native:

Thus end my dream cards of Koufax playing into the 1970’s, wondering all the incredible numbers he could have racked up had not injuries stopped his career to a dead halt, right after taking home his third Cy Young Award in four years in 1966.
What COULD he have done during the “Year of the Pitcher” in 1968? Man we can only wonder...

Monday, August 22, 2016


Here is a “missing” 1978 card that’s a last hurrah for former Oakland A’s player Rich McKinney, who came back to the Majors after missing a year:

McKinney was back in the big leagues in 1977, appearing in 86 games for the A’s, hitting .177 with 35 hits over 198 at-bats, which sadly didn’t translate into any more Major League action, closing out his seven-year career.
Up with the Chicago White Sox in 1970, he went on to play for the New York Yankees in 1972, then Oakland the final four years of his career, although he only played in 13 games in 1974 and 1975 combined before spending 1976 in the Minors, putting up some good numbers.
When it was all said and done, McKinney finished with a .225 batting average, with 199 hits in 886 at-bats over 341 games, with 20 homers and exactly 100 runs batted in and 79 runs scored.

Sunday, August 21, 2016


Here is a “Highlight” card for batting guru Rod Crew, who took home his SEVENTH batting title in 1978, absolutely dominating the American League during the 1970’s:

Carew hit .333 in 1978, and also led the league in on-base-percentage with a .411 figure, and marked the sixth time in seven years he took home the title as top hitter in the Junior Circuit.
Now, you also have to remember that he just missed another title in 1976 when he fell two points short of George Brett, which could have made it seven straight!
The man topped .300 15 years in a row, with a high of .388 in 1977 on his way to a Most Valuable Player Award and capturing the public’s attention with his .400 chase late in the season.
A clear-cut Hall of Fame player, he was inducted on his first year of eligibility in 1991 when he garnered 90.5% of the vote, which leaves me with the question: who the hell are the 9.5% who DIDN’T vote for him!!!???

Saturday, August 20, 2016


Next up in my “Turn Back The Clock” series is the 10th anniversary of the new “Murderer’s Row”, the 1961 New York Yankees and their march towards another World Championship:

The Yanks almost matched the franchise record of 110 wins (1927 team), but fell one short, but it wasn’t a problem as they took the American League and them swept the Cincinnati Reds to take yet another title during the Berra/Mantle era.
Although they had great pitching as evidenced by their six pitchers with double-digit wins and single-digit losses, led by the “Chairman of the Board” Whitey Ford and his Cy Young winning 25-4 record, it was their monster line-up that featured no less than six players with 20 or more home runs.
Of course it was all about Mantle and Maris, as they slammed their way into the record books with 54 and 61 homers respectively. But they were helped by 28 homers by Bill Skowron, 22 homers by Yogi Berra, and 21 homers apiece for Elston Howard and Johnny Blanchard, who managed his 21 homers in only 243 at-bats!
Considered one of the great teams of all-time, they had the Cy Young winner in Ford and the MVP in Maris, with Mantle as arguably the player with the MVP season!

Friday, August 19, 2016


The next nickname card I whipped up was for former all-star third baseman Graig Nettles, a childhood hero of mine, and his somewhat odd “Puff” tag:

I really don’t know why he had that nickname, but I’ll use any excuse to make a card up for him. Growing up in Brooklyn during the mid-70s through the early-80’s, Nettles was right up there with Munson, Jackson, Randolph and Guidry on that “Bronx Zoo” all-star cast as far as we were concerned.
A home run champ in 1976, a World Series hero for his stellar defensive work at third base, his hilarious quips like “You went from Cy Young to Sayonara” to Sparky Lyle when the Yankees got Rich Gossage to be their new reliever, we were all crushed when he went to his hometown Sand Diego Padres in 1984, especially seeing him (and Rich Gossage) play in the World Series that year.
He would end up playing 22-years in the Majors, hitting 390 homers with 1314 runs batted in and 1193 runs scored with 2225 hits, while collecting two Gold Gloves and appearing in six all-star games.
Anyone know where the name “Puff” came from?

Thursday, August 18, 2016


Here’s a career-capping “missing” 1973 card for Ed Spiezio, former third baseman and father of future Major League player Scott Spiezio:

Spiezio the senior actually played more than half-the season in 1972, split between the San Diego Padres and Chicago White Sox, appearing in 94 games and batting .229 with 70 hits over 306 at-bats, with 26 runs batted in and 22 runs scored.
An “original” member of the Padres in 1969, Spiezio came up with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1964 and got to be a part of both championship Cardinal teams (‘64 & ‘67).
For his nine-year career, he would bat .238, collecting 367 hits over 1544 at-bats in 554 lifetime games while generally playing third, with some action at shortstop and outfield.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016


Here’s a “missing” 1977 card for former Los Angeles Dodger infielder Rick Auerbach, who would actually be a Cincinnati Red during the 1977 season:

Auerbach appeared in 36 games for the Dodgers during the 1976 season, batting .128 with six hits in 47 at-bats, in what was the last of three seasons on the West Coast after coming up with the Milwaukee Brewers in 1971.
He would go on to play through the 1981 season, the last with the Seattle Mariners, and end up with a .220 career average with 309 hits and 167 runs scored over 624 games and 1407 at-bats in eleven years at the “big show”.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016


Just a quick update on the second issue of "wthballs", the "1970 Missing in Action" cards: the issue was sent to the printer today and should be here in my hands by the end of next week!
I'll let you all know when they're here, and remind you that there are some copies left of the "MIA MIA" 1972 "missing" In-Action cards issue (#1) available.
Email me at for info on how to order!


The next coach card up in my ongoing series is former New York Yankees great Yogi Berra, who moved on to coaching the cross-town Mets after a Hall of Fame playing career and one-year stint as a manager in 1964 over in the Bronx:

Berra would go on to put in a few years coaching out in Queens for the Mets before becoming their manager after the untimely death of former skipper Gil Hodges, and wouldn’t you know it, they would go all the way to the World Series before losing to the dynastic Oakland A’s.
This was the team best known for “Ya Gotta Believe” thanks to reliever Tug McGraws famous call, and made Yogi a World Series manager in both the American League (in 1964 with the Yanks) and National League with these Mets.
He would go on to become a Yankee coach AND manager yet again, as well as a Houston skipper later on before just being “Yogi”, the Yankee ambassador of history and legend until his death in 2015.
About as beloved a player as the sport has ever seen, he is sorely missed, but we’ll always have his “Yogi-isms” to make us smile...

Monday, August 15, 2016


Already done laying out the next issue of the "whentoppshadballs" magazine (issue #2), and it'll be of all the 1970 "Missing in Action" cards I've designed so far.
The 'zine will have 24-pages, full-color, just like the previous "MIA-MIA" 1972 issue, with cards shown at actual size.
I'm hoping to have it out to the printer this week! So keep an eye out for further info!


Here’s a “missing” 1972 card for former Minnesota Twins pitcher Hal Haydel, who played for two seasons in the Major Leagues, the bulk of action coming in 1971:

After a four game call-up in 1970, which saw him post a 2-0 record with a 3.00 earned run average over nine-innings, Haydel came back in 1971 and appeared in 31 games.
Over those games, he posted a 4-2 record with a 4.28 ERA and 29 strikeouts over 40 innings, all our of the bullpen, giving him a nice 6-2 career record with a 4.04 ERA, 33 strikeouts and one save in 35 appearances and 49 innings pitched.
Not bad for a guy who played eight years on minor league ball before tasting the “big time”...

Sunday, August 14, 2016


By the time “Tom Terrific” wrapped up his 1975 season, it was a given that he earned himself his third Cy Youn Award, matching Sandy Koufax as the only players to do so.
So today I give you a “Highlight” card celebrating the feat:

Seaver was in his prime in 1975, posting a 22-9 record with a 2.38 earned run average and 248 strikeouts. The win and K totals led the league, also contributing to his eighth all-star nod.
It was also the eighth year in a row that he posted 200 or more strikeouts, as well as fourth 20-win season and eighth sub-3.00 ERA, all setting him on a path straight to the Hall of Fame after his playing days were over.
And when those days were over, all Seaver had to show for it was a brilliant 2.86 ERA, 311 wins, 61 shutouts and 3640 strikeouts over 656 games, all but nine of them starts, and (at the time) the highest percentage of votes for the Hall.
The guy was incredible, and arguably missed out on being the first FOUR-time Cy Young winner when he got ripped off in 1981, with the award going to Dodger sensation Fernando Valenzuela.
Just an amazing talent...

Saturday, August 13, 2016


Next up in my “nicknames” thread here on the blog is one of my favorites: former Twins bopper Dan Ford and his “Disco Dan” moniker, about as relevant a nickname for the decade as there is, no?
Check out the card:

I used the 1976 format since he came up and had a pretty nice rookie year in Minnesota in 1975, hitting .280 with 15 home runs, 59 runs batted in and 72 runs scored over 130 games and 440 at-bats.
The following year he was even more productive, hitting 20 homers with 86 RBI’s and 87 runs scored along with 17 stolen bases, avoiding the dreaded “sophomore jinx”.
He would go on to a nice 11-year career, playing for the California Angels and Baltimore Orioles after his time with the Twins, and had his best year in 1979 while in California, hitting 21 homers with 101 RBI’s and 100 runs scored while batting .290, all career highs.
By the time he retired after the 1985 season, he collected 121 homers, with 566 RBI’s, 598 runs scored while hitting .270 over 1153 games and 4163 at-bats, and added a World Championship to his career in 1983 with the O's.
“Disco Dan” was in the house!

Friday, August 12, 2016


The 1972 "MIA-MIA" magazines arrived (just ahead of the downpour) and look great!
Anyone who wants to get a copy can paypal me $7 (includes 1st Class Postage), and I'll get one out to you asap.
It's a 24-page full-color saddle-stitched magazine, 8.5" x 11".
It will be the first of what I hope to be about a couple dozen issues I'll be producing documenting the blog and all the cards I've designed over the years.
Any questions email me at:


Here’s a “missing” 1973 card for former Cleveland Indians pitcher Tom Hilgendorf, who put together a nice 1972 season for the Tribe yet didn’t get a slot in Topps’ set the following year:

For the ‘72 season Hilgendorf appeared in 19 games, five of which were starts, while posting a 3-1 record with a nice 2.68 earned run average over 47 innings pitched.
Those three wins would be the first of his career after starting off 0-4 while with ther St. Louis Cardinals in 1969/1970, and he would go on to collect 16 more wins before his brief career was up after the 1975 season with the Philadelphia Phillies.
All told Hilgendorf finished with a 19-14 record, with a 3.04 ERA and 173 strikeouts in 184 appearances and 313.2 innings, with 14 saves thrown in, very nice numbers for the short amount of time he had in the big leagues.

Thursday, August 11, 2016


Here’s a “Then and Now” card for another baseball lifer, Phil Roof, who was wrapping up a nice 15-year career in 1977 as a member of the original Toronto Blue Jays:

Roof came up in 1961 as a member of the Milwaukee Braves, and went on to a solid career as a back-up catcher for eight teams: Braves, California Angels, Cleveland Indians, Kansas City/Oakland Athletics, Milwaukee Brewers, Minnesota Twins, Chicago White Sox and Blue Jays.
As a matter of fact Roof was the very first player taken by Toronto in the expansion draft! The very first Blue Jay!
He finished with a .215 career batting average, with 463 hits in 2151 at-bats over 857 games, all but four of them behind the plate (with three at first base and one as a designated hitter).
Post playing career, Roof went on to become a coach and manager in the Major and Minor league levels, holding various positions between 1978 until his retirement in 2005, almost 50 years in organized pro-ball.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016


I’m excited to show off an idea I’ve been kicking around for a while now, to print an 8.5x11 full-color magazine based on all the creations here on this blog.
Being that I have no idea what the licensing issues would be to actually print up cards themselves, I decided that a small magazine, each issue based on a particular theme of the blog, would be fun to put together.
I started with a 24-page ‘zine on the “missing” 1972 In-Action cards ("MIA-MIA") I’ve been posting for some time, and it came out great! Just nice to have them together to look at in actual card size, side-by-side as if in a binder with plastic sleeves.
Now that I have this here, I thought maybe some of you may want one yourselves.
I wish I could send this out to anyone interested for free, and in no way is this a “money-maker” for me, the $5 price for the ‘zine plus $2 postage is to cover printing costs and shipping materials, but if any of you want to order one please let me know and I’ll put one aside for you.
I’m going to go and order a batch of them today so they’ll be here within a week and ready to go out asap.
I also plan on going ahead and designing/laying out the “1970 Missing in Action” cards-issue next, all the "Missing in Action" cards I designed for the 1970 set until present date, followed by the same for 1971, 1972, etc.
I'm definitely printing a series of these 'zines for myself, but if any of you want a copy of a particular issue just let me know! You can email me at:
I'll keep everyone posted as far as new issues as they come.


You know, it wasn’t until YEARS after this card was issued that I ever realized that “Mr. Cub”, Ernie Banks was actually in the 1977 Topps set, with his face easily recognizable on the Cubs’ team card:

I’m telling you, it wasn’t until the early-80’s, as a high-schooler thumbing through my cards on a lazy Saturday afternoon that I realized that the legend was there, smiling as always, right in the middle of Dave Rosello, Manny Trillo, the Reuschel brothers and Jose Cardenal!
I was psyched, since at the time the only Banks card I had in my collection were some league-leader cards from the late-60’s since I was a broke teen who’d spend any $$ he did have on Punk records!
Pretty sweet!

Tuesday, August 9, 2016


Let’s go and give the hero of the 1955 World Series, Johnny Podres, a career capping 1970 card that can also double as a “missing in action” card:

Podres was wrapping up a very nice 15-year career pitching for the inaugural 1969 San Diego Padres team, ending up with a 5-6 record along with a 4.31 earned run average over 17 games, the last of his career, and 64.2 innings.
Those numbers would add into his final tally of 148 wins against 116 losses, with a 3.68 ERA, 24 shutouts, 10 saves and 1435 strikeouts over a spread of 440 games and 2265 innings pitched.
Of course, he made his mark on the baseball world early on in his career when he went 2-0 against the dreaded rival New York Yankees in the 1955 World Series while with the Brooklyn Dodgers.
That performance garnered him the World Series MVP as well as the adoration of a bunch of “bums” in my native Brooklyn, and actually would mark the first of FOUR champion teams he was a part of with the Dodger organization.

Monday, August 8, 2016


This can be called somewhat of a “Career Capper” of sorts, being that it’ll  be  the last fantasy Mantle card I create imagining if he played to about his age-40 season:

Funny enough this card serves multiple roles: career-capper, MIA MIA, missing in action, but more than anything serves as a reminder to how amazing Mantle was considering he retired at a young age yet put up numbers that made him a legend!
Heck, just two years after this card would have been issued he was elected to the Hall of Fame, cementing his God-like baseball status, and making him arguably the most popular New York Yankee of all-time, especially in the baseball-card world.

Sunday, August 7, 2016


Next up in my ongoing “Turn Back the Clock” series is a “10th Anniversary” card for the record-breaking year Roger Maris had for the awesome 1961 New York Yankees team, who dominated baseball and stampeded straight to a World Championship:

A big part of the Yankees march towards greatness was the incredible tandem Roger Maris, the previous year’s Most Valuable Player, and legend Mickey Mantle who took home the MVP in 1956 and 1957.
Together they would go on to hit 115 home runs between them, a record at the time, along with the rest of the team hitting another 125 homers for a record 240 homers for one team in any given season (again, since broken).
As we all know by now, the drama surrounding what should have been a wonderful time got to the point where the league stepped in and declared that should Maris break the record AFTER his 154th game, it would go down with an asterisk, since the current record holder at the time, Babe Ruth, hit 60 homers in eight less games.
I remember reading how the pressure got so bad for Maris that he began losing hair as he dealt with not only the league, but hardcore fans who felt that Mantle should have been the one to break the record and not him, since Mantle was a NYC idol to so many.
Nevertheless, after Mantle was hobbled by injuries, curtailing his own home run record pursuit (ending up with 54 homers), Maris became the focus and on October 1st, against the Boston Red Sox and pitcher Tracy Stallard on the final game of the season, he connected for the record, unmatched in Major League ball until both Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa both passed him in 1998.
It’s still somewhat of an oddity that Maris did break the record when you look at his career overall. Although a very good player in his prime between 1958 through 1964, that 1961 season was truly a break-out year that he never managed to come close to again.

Saturday, August 6, 2016


Let’s look at another airbrushing gem from the early 1970’s, the Gerry Janeski card from the 1971 set:

Awesome. Kind of a hit-and-run jammie as far as paint-jobs go! Love the black outline around the cap!
After coming up as a rookie with the Chicago White Sox in 1970 and posting a 10-17 record over 35 starts and 205.2 innings pitched, Janeski was traded in February of ‘71 for former “Bonus Baby” Rick Reichardt.
So for starters it was impressive that Topps got to him on his new team the way they did, but my question is why did they just paint his cap and leave it at that?
Seems an attempt at the “W” logo for the Senators should have been somewhat easy, no?
Or maybe I’m just flat-out wrong here.
Nevertheless, combined with what seems to be a “blank” uniform, it strikes an odd image for a Major League baseball card.
Janeski would pitch three years in the big leagues, finishing up with a 11-23 record over 62 games, 46 of which were starts, including a 4.73 earned run average, a shutout and a save, with 105 strikeouts over 280 innings.

Friday, August 5, 2016


Today I post a “missing” 1978 card for former pitcher Jim Crawford of the Detroit Tigers, who pitched 126 innings during the 1977 season yet didn’t make Topps’ cut the following year:

Crawford appeared in 37 games for Detroit, posting a 7-8 record, starting seven games and collecting one save with 91 strikeouts over the aforementioned 126 innings.
That’s a lot of play time to be left off the set in 1978, especially since his career wasn’t done yet, as he appeared in another 20 games during the ‘78 season, going 2-3 with a 4.35 earned run average in 39.1 innings pitched.
That 1978 would be the last of his five-year career, with the first two suiting up for the Houston Astros, and he would retire with a 15-28 record, along with a 4.40 ERA with 276 strikeouts in 181 appearances and 431.1 innings pitched.
Anyone have an idea why he was left off the 1978 set? 37 games and 120+ innings seems like a sufficient amount of playing time for a pitcher(?)!

Thursday, August 4, 2016


Today’s “Fantasy Coach Card” is none other than beloved St. Louis Cardinal legend Red Schoendienst, player, coach and manager for the organization and a true baseball lifer:

Schoendienst first put together a 19-year Hall of Fame career between 1945 and 1963, winning a championship with the Cards as well as the Milwaukee Braves in 1957, before coaching and then managing St. Louis from 1965 to 1976, winning yet another championship in 1967, with a spot managing gig in 1980 and then 1990 all while coaching the team in between, including the 1982 season, giving him a FIFTH championship in his illustrious career.
Believe it or not, 2015 marked the 70th consecutive year in Major League ball as a player, manager or coach!
Godspeed Red!!!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016


Here’s a “missing” 1975 card for former utility player and pinch-runner Matt Alexander, who came up with the Chicago Cubs before moving on to the Oakland A’s:

Alexander appeared in 45 games for the Cubs during the 1974 season, hitting .204 with 11 hits over 54 runs batted in, along with 12 walks and 15 runs scored, oddly high numbers for only 74 plate appearances.
From there he moved on to the Oakland team and was one of their “legs off the bench” along with Herb Washington and Larry Lintz, with 63 stolen bases between 1975 and 1977 with only 88 plate appearances over 214 games!
By the time he retired after the 1981 season after four years with the Pittsburgh Pirates, he scored 111 runs with only 195 plate appearances, along with 103 stolen bases and a .214 career average, with 36 hits in 168 official at-bats.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016


OK, so here is what will be the LAST Mickey Mantle “Fantasy Card” as far as imagining if his career lasted into the 1970’s.
I WILL be creating an “In-Action” card for the ‘72 set as well in the near future, but as far as creeping further and further into the decade, this is it:

Even though “The Mick” put together a career for the ages, sure would have been nice to see what numbers he could have amassed if his body (and his vices) didn’t betray him.
Nevertheless, the man was (and is) a legend and one of the all-time favorite athletes and celebrities in New York City history!
Anyway, keep an eye out for the “In Action” card in the next week or so!

Monday, August 1, 2016


Here’s a “missing” 1976 card as a part of the ongoing “1976 Project” for Vic Harris of the Chicago Cubs:

Harris didn’t play much in 1975, appearing in 51 games and batting .179 with 10 hits in 56 at-bats.
This was just two years from his full season in 1973 when he played with the Texas Rangers, playing in 152 games with 618 plate appearances.
But that would be the most action in any of his eight big-league seasons spanning 1972 and 1980 (he missed 1979), as he’d play for the Cardinals, Giants and Brewers after his Chicago stint, totaling a .217 career average with 349 hits over 1610 at-bats in 579 games.


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