27 February 2011

'diamond debut' just doesn't have the cachet of 'final tribute'

in the mid '90's, upper deck started branding certain cards with graphics indicating award winners or all stars or (my favorites) 'final tributes' which saluted a retired players' total career stats.  those cards were reserved for mostly stars/semi-stars and not given to the three year journeyman infielder.  they also identified those who had debuted the previous year with their 'diamond debut' label, as seen on this 1998 ud collector's choice adam riggs card
so exactly what is this card celebrating?  well, in his 'diamond debut' on 8/7/97, riggs started at second base in a game against the expos in montreal.  in his first at bat, facing the immortal jim bullinger, riggs reached on an error which allowed a run to score.  riggs then stole second base and scored on a brett butler single.  in his second at bat, again against bullinger, riggs grounded out to second.  his next time up, he grounded out to third against anthony telford.  finally, in his fourth trip to the plate, riggs got the ball out of the infield.  facing another expos reliever (rick dehart) riggs lined out to center. 

in the field, riggs had three chances and handled them all cleanly.  he fielded a grounder off the bat of david segui and started an inning ending double play in the first, then caught a darrin fletcher pop up and got the putout on a force of mark grudzielanek at second base in the second inning.

so there you have it, a pretty inauspicious 'diamond debut'.  it's hard to believe topps created sets around this concept in 1990 and 1991.


SpastikMooss said...

I kind of liked these. They also remind me of the late 90's Upper Deck cards where they tell you exactly what the player did during the game the photo is taken from. I loved that aspect of cards so much, even if it was just a vague blurb (i.e. Johnson shows hustle as he chases a fly ball - 8/21/99) in cases where the player did terrible that day.

Ryan said...

I actually got to see Adam Riggs play in person. It was not on this continent though. I was in Japan in August of 2006 and went to a game there. It's a completely different baseball atmosphere at the stadium than here in the states. Anyways, Riggs was playing for the Yakult Swallows that day. "Adam Riggs" was the only thing that the PA announcer said that I understood that day.