the 1995 topps raul mondesi is one of my favorite cards. in fact, i think it's perfect.coming off his unanimous 1994 rookie of the year award winning season (john hudek was second), raul is off to the races as the reds shortsop (larkin, most likely) dives for the grounder up the middle. of the dodgers’ 1990’s rookies of the year, mondesi was my favorite. yes, even more of a favorite than piazza. he could do it all – run, hit for average, hit for power, field and throw. he ran low to the ground like rickey and was built like a football player.
plus, you could cheer his name as ‘rah-uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuul’. kind of like ‘luuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuc’ at kings games. anyway, mondesi was the first 30-30 dodger, i believe, and his 1999 opening day 3-run, 2-out bottom of the ninth game tying and 2-run, 2-out bottom of the eleventh game winning home runs were two of the greatest moments of my fandom. ushering in what i thought was going to be a dynastic kevin brown era in such a dramatic fashion was nothing short of euphoric.
eventually, though, raul wore out his welcome and was traded for shawn green. green would supplant mondesi as my favorite current dodger immediately, but i always rooted for rah-uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuul.