29 October 2012

lurking coaches

too often coaches get the shaft when it comes to baseball cards.  i don't think topps has officially recognized coaches in their flagship set since 1974, and there have been precious few coaches cards in other sets.  usually, the only time a coach shows up on cardboard these days is in a team set designed for a stadium giveaway or fan pack, or, in the case of ron perranoski in 1987 and again in 1989, when there's a crowd.  here are a few cards upon which some coaches have managed to make an appearance.  and the cards are better for it, in my opinion.

first, danny ozark is walking into position in the background of billy grabarkewitz's 1970 topps card.
this scene continues to play out on jeff torborg's 1970 and 1971 topps cards, by the way.

next up, we have joe amalfitano coaching over at third base as mariano duncan takes a lead on his 1985 topps traded card
amalfitano last made an appearance on a topps card in 1973, i believe, as a member of the giants' coaching staff.  he's back with the giants these days in some capacity, and duncan is no longer a dodger coach either.

here's a cool card - it's actually the back of armando reynoso's 1992 upper deck card
that's dodger coach joe ferguson in the background, headed down the right field line in chavez ravine.  fergie coached under tommy lasorda from 1988 through 1994.

for a long time, mark cresse was the dodgers' bullpen coach.  that's him sitting down in the background of cory snyder's 1994 ud collector's choice card
which also features foreground lurker jody reed.  cresse served under managers walt alston, tommy lasorda, bill russell, and this next lurker, glenn hoffman, who finds a spot on jim tracy's 2004 topps card
hoffman took over on an interim basis after bill russell was fired in 1998.  cresse didn't last long under hoffman's regime, as he was fired along with hitting coach reggie smith and pitching coach glenn gregson shortly after hoffman took over.  hoffman himself was replaced as manager by davey johnson in 1999, but he stayed on as a coach under johnson and his replacement, jim tracy.

with davey lopes back in town, i am always on the lookout for a glimpse of him in the background of a card.  unfortunately, it's third base coach tim wallach who is lurking on jerry sands' 2012 topps card
still, an arm of wallach is better than pretending that the coaches don't exist.  here's hoping that all of wallach or lopes or trey hillman or kenny howell or whoever replaces dave hansen shows up in the background on some 2013 cards.


Eric C. Loy said...

Amalfitano is on the 1981 Cubs team card as the manager.

gcrl said...

Thanks Eric. I forgot about his turn with the cubs.

Eric C. Loy said...

Wish I could forget! lol