Tuesday, February 27, 2024


On the blog today, a fun 1977 OPC/Topps image variation, this one of the reigning National League batting champ at the time, Bill Madlock, who went from the Chicago Cubs to the San Francisco Giants before the 1977 season began:

OPC version

Topps version

While Topps already went to press before the trade, OPC went ahead and hilariously airbrushed him into his new uniform, with stupendous results!
"Mad Dog" was coming off of TWO straight National League batting titles in 1977 when he was traded to the San Francisco Giants in a multi-player deal, with Chicago landing Bobby Murcer among others.
Madlock didn’t disappoint, as he’d put in two solid seasons of .300+ averages with some pop before he was shipped off to Pittsburgh in the middle of the 1979 season.
He would go on to put together a very nice 15-year career between 1973 and 1987, but apparently not quite Hall material, finishing with a .305 average with 2008 hits, 920 runs scored and 860 runs batted in with 163 homers and 174 stolen bases.
Just one of those historical quirks that has him as a four-time batting champ, but not really one of the all-time greats.
As a matter of fact, I believe he is still the only eligible four-time (or more) batting champ NOT in the Hall of Fame.


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