So, I bought a ton of Topps 1987 Cello unopened packs recently. At first glance, I was pretty happy with what I had gotten (Barry Bonds, Barry Larkin, Mark McGwire, Cal Ripken and many others). It wasn’t until I turned the cards over and looked through the information there that I understood just what a goldmine I had hit. Put simply, these things are hilarious.
The first card I looked at was Mike Boddicker. Did you know that “Mike has worked as a grain elevator operator?” Neither did I. The same guy who was traded for Brady Anderson AND Curt Schilling back in the day was once a grain elevator operator! This discovery got me intrigued and so I went ahead and looked through all the cards and found some very interesting tidbits.
The first Wacky Look Back will be Howard Johnson:
Apparently, in 1985, Howard Johnson entered and dominated (well co-dominated) a rib-eating contest among professional athletes.
Obviously, the biggest question is left unanswered: HOW MANY RIBS DID HE PUT DOWN!?!? And who all was involved? Was Cecil Fielder involved? I’d guess not because he wasn’t a rookie until 1987. If Fielder wasn’t involved, does his co-crown count? Were there football players involved? If so, any lineman? Joe Montana? And perhaps most importantly, are they still doing this now? Does ESPN broadcast it? Looking at HoJo’s picture, I can’t help but think that he probably would have won that crown outright if he’d had Keith Hernandez-esque facial hair. That sucker would have sopped up a ton of BBQ sauce.
Anyway, I think this is a fantastic tidbit to put on HoJo’s career. A former first-round draft pick of the Detroit Tigers in 1979 he made an auspicious debut in 1982 as a 21-year-old. He hit .316 in 54 games. He wouldn’t reach similar success again until 1987, in his third season with the Mets. His career profiles very similar to Eric Chavez – I imagine HoJo will be remembered more fondly. I already do because he ate ribs, not injured them.
What do you think of this article? Did you enjoy? Has anyone else done this? Let me know if I should continue. More importantly, what do you think of the title?