Card fact: I'm stumped for facts on this card. I will say that Topps did a pretty good job getting a photo of Kaat in a White Sox uniform in his 1974 card as he was acquired off waivers from the Twins in August of 1973.
What I thought about this card then: I had the mini card. I've mentioned this before, but 1975 was unique in that you could go the entire card season having the mini card of someone, but not the regular-sized card. When I finally picked up the regular-sized card of Kaat, it looked freakishly large.
What I think about this card now: It looks freakishly large.
Other stuff: Jim Kaat was one of those few major league players who played in four decades. When he retired, he held the mark for the most seasons in an MLB career for a pitcher. That, and his tremendous fielding ability -- he once held the record for his position with 16 Gold Glove awards -- were his on-field claims to fame. He also won 25 games for the AL champion Twins in 1965.
At this point in his career, Kaat was known mostly for his association with one organization -- the Senators/Twins. But he was let go by Minnesota in 1973 and the White Sox picked him up. Kaat proceeded to record back-to-back 20-win seasons for Chicago. But the White Sox then traded him to the Phillies after 1975. That's when Kaat began to bounce around from Philadelphia to the Yankees to St. Louis.
Kaat later became known for his broadcasting. He was an announcer for CBS and ESPN as well as the Twins and Yankees. I know him for his time with the Yankees. He was the voice of reason, along with Ken Singleton, that balanced out Michael Kay. Sadly, Kaat has retired from regular broadcasting, but Kay is still going.
One last thing: Kaat always looks amused. I like that.
Back facts: Kaat pitched for nine more years after this card came out. How would have Topps fit nine extra years AND the cartoon onto the back of this card?
Other blog stuff: I'll just show the regular card and the mini card side-by-side. That's always fun. At least for me.