Posts Tagged ‘New York Mets 1986’

h2h Corner ~ Check You Out On the Flip Side: Bill Buckner

For the history of this series, check out this article: Check You On the Flip Side: Howard Johnson.

Buckner - 1973 BackBuckner - 1973 Front

While this card doesn’t exactly have a zany tale on the back, it does serve as a Homer-esque prologue to what will become an enigmatic career.

Buckner, from a young age, was always adept at putting the ball in play. Through just three minor league seasons, he posted a .328 AVG, but just a .345 OBP. As this 1973 Topps Card suggests, Buckner wowed the team in spring training, earning full time duties at just 21-years-old. Continue reading

h2h Corner ~ Check You On the Flip Side: Johnny Gray

For the history of this series, check out this article: Check You On the Flip Side: Howard Johnson.

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Artistically, this card is beautiful. The color contrast with the shading is just perfect. That YouTube double rainbow guy would be flipping out if he saw this. You also can’t beat an elephant standing on a baseball while brandishing a bat!

What strikes me as most fascinating is the “You’re the Ump” question. For some reason, it indicates that, in the American League, if a ball hits the foul pole and bounces back into play or into foul territory the hit is scored a double, whereas if the ball bounces into fair territory in the stands it is a homer. Whaa? That is some awkward backyard Wiffle Ball rules if you ask me.

Clearly there is a massive logic fail here.

Another logic fail is the idea that Gray was a hard luck loser. He had a 1.92 WHIP in 1954. That year was the only time a team let him pitch more than 26 IPs. Big guy, beautiful card, just not a good pitcher.

What do you think of this article? Did you enjoy? Has anyone else done this? Let me know if I should continue.

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h2h Corner ~ Check You On the Flip Side: Howard Johnson

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:

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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?

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