Saturday, April 3, 2010

#160 - Graig Nettles

Card fact: Up until now, every card number ending in a zero had featured a different team. But this is the second Yankee to have a card number ending in zero. The first was Thurman Munson (#20).

What I thought about this card then: Never saw it. My first recollection of a Graig Nettles card was the 1978 card of him charging out of the batter's box.

What I think about this card now: It was one of the last I obtained when I was collecting the entire set. I think it was the final Yankee that I needed.

Other stuff: Well, you can't be a Dodger fan and not think of the 1978 World Series when you come across Nettles' name. His plays at third base were very frustrating and played a huge part in turning the tide of the Series against the Dodgers.

Nettles was a slugger for those Yankee teams of the '70s, but wasn't much of a high average-on base guy. He was also the instigator for a lot of pranks in the Yankee clubhouse in those days, earning the nickname "Puff," for starting trouble and then disappearing before anyone knew what happened.

His controversial book, "Balls," basically got him shipped to San Diego and he ended his career with the Expos.

Nettles made an appearance in my area a couple of years ago and the person who interviewed him for our paper had a few colorful stories about Nettles, but I'm embarrassed to say that I don't remember them.

Also, I was always annoyed by people who called him "Craig Nettles." But I just read on his wikipedia page that his mother named him "Graig" because she didn't like the names "Greg" or "Craig."

Hey! What's wrong with Greg? It's a heck of a lot better than "Graaaaaaiiiiiiigggggg."

Back facts: The write-up at the bottom contains a newspaper editor's pet peeve: there is no need to say "new major league record." If you set a record, it's understood that it's "new." So "major league record" is perfectly fine.

Other blog stuff: I will be taking a brief break on this blog for the holiday. By the way, this color combo goes very nicely with Easter, so I am officially calling it the "Marshmallow Peeps" combo. Enjoy your Easter.


Matt Runyon said...

My chemistry students will be putting some marshmallow peeps out of their misery this Wednesday. They'll enjoy seeing what can be done to them (and what they can withstand). :)

Jim said...

Happy Easter!

Play at the Plate said...

Great color combo for the Yankees. And someone who's mother doesn't like the name Greg.

jacobmrley said...

When I build this set about 15 years ago, this was the last card I had to get. I even had a mini version filling the space, but for some reason, this one eluded me for a while. This was pre-ebay, so I relied on shows and stores to fill my pages and for some reason, people were hording this damn card and I could never find it (I see you had the same problem). I eventually nabbed it at a flea market in Nanuet NY for a whole 50 cents. The '75 Nettles will always hold a special place in my heart (and I have the mini if I ever lose my mind enough to try and build the '75 mini set).

Flitgun Frankie said...

After Nettles had his 11 HR April, his bat broke at the beginning of May and they found it was stuffed with cork. I don’t remember if Nettles was suspended, but he only hit 11 more HR's the rest of the year. That was the very first corked bat scandal I remember in my baseball watching career.