Saturday, January 30, 2010

#100 - Willie Stargell

Card fact: As anyone who collected Topps cards during the the 1970s knows, cards with century numbers -- 100, 200, etc. -- were reserved for the superstars of the day. Topps kind of follows that formula today, but it's not nearly as strict as it was during the '70s and '80s.

What I thought about this card then: I never held it in my grubby, Pop-Rocks-stained hands.

What I think about this card now: "Pops" seems positively svelte here. I'm more accustomed to the late '70s, beefy "Pops."

Other stuff: I loved the Pirates Fam-i-lee teams. I rooted for the team vigorously in 1979. But I hated that Stargell has hit two of the four home runs hit completely out of Dodger Stadium. One off Alan Foster and one off Andy Messermith. Average home run length of the two? 499 1/2 feet.

Stargell died of stroke-related complications at age 61 in 2001.

Back facts: The cartoon doesn't tell you why Billy Meyer or the 1952 Pirates are significant. Meyer managed that 1952 team to a 42-112 record. They were god awful. The thing I find funny is the Pirates have retired Meyer's number.

Other blog stuff: OK, it's time to take inventory after 100 cards. Let's see what's going on in the various categories.

1. COLOR COMBINATIONS

There are 18 color combinations. Orange-brown leads the way on the strength of the Highlights cards, which were the first seven cards of the set. But green-light green has pulled within one thanks to the Stargell card. (By the way, I am not including the All-Stars in the yellow-red category. I'll keep them separate).

Orange-brown: 11
Green-light green: 10
Green-purple: 8
Pink-yellow: 8
Yellow-light blue: 7
Light blue-green: 6
Brown-orange: 5
Orange-yellow: 5
Purple-pink: 5
Yellow-green: 5
Green-yellow: 4
Red-blue: 4
Red-orange: 4
Red-yellow: 4
Yellow-red: 4
Blue-orange: 3
Brown-tan: 3
Tan-light blue: 2

2. POWDER-BLUE UNIFORMS

Thirteen, so far. A lot of Brewers, Royals and Twins.

3. LOOKING UP

Five cards of players contemplating the sky. I would've thought there would have been more.

4. DUDE LOOKS LIKE A LADY

Only two guys that I thought looked like chicks when I was a youngster. That will definitely change as the set progresses.

5. DECEASED

With the addition of Stargell, 11 players are no longer on this earth. Manager Danny Ozark has also passed.

6. CHAW

Sadly, only one guy (Joe Coleman) featuring a chaw. That is so disappointing.

7. MLB SONS

Five players thus far have had kids who played in the majors, too.

8. ROOKIE CUP/ALL-STARS

One/two

9. MOST POPULAR FIRST NAME

Dave, by a landslide. Eleven players, so far, are named Dave/David.

10. MINIS

Of the first 100 cards, I have 17 in mini form. That's about one-fifth, which is around what I have for the entire set.

OK, enough looking back. Time to move ahead. Next up: a team that doesn't exist anymore.

5 comments:

1982 Topps blog - My 1st Cards said...

Is he in a Pirates home uniform in a real grass stadium? I think this is an old photo of him. Which could also explain why he's much more in shape than his late 70's "beefy" pops era.

I'm guessing this is either at the 1972 All-Star game in Atlanta or in Pittsburgh before Three Rivers. I'm leaning towards Atlanta. That's definitely not a spring training field.

Jim said...

I'm hoping for big things from purple-pink in the next 100!

Play at the Plate said...

Congrats on getting to 100. It seems like you just started this blog. This is one of the meager few 1975 Topps cards I actually have in my collection. The 1979 "Family" World Series was the first time I saw baseball on TV. It was the start of something good.

tvgator1 said...

That picture is taken at SHEA Stadium. If you've seen cards as long as I have, you will begin to know Shea Stadium by heart. Topps took alot of photos there. And its probably a new (1974) picture since he's not wearing the 21 patch used in '73.

Charlie said...

I'm pretty sure that I don't have this card and now I want it.