27 January 2014

requiem for a teammate - a black armband for danny frisella

danny frisella was only 30 years old when he died in january of 1977 from injuries sustained in a dune buggy crash.  he had split the 1976 season between the cardinals and brewers, and had established himself as the brew crew's closer with 9 saves and a 2.74 era in 32 appearances.

the team subsequently wore black armbands during the 1977 season as a memorial for their teammate.  cecil cooper's 1978 o-pee-chee card is a good example. 
cooper's 1978 card(s - topps and o-pee-chee) will always make me think of my swimming lessons in the summer of 1978.  it's a great card, but i like it all the more because the first one i ever saw was lying near the pool at which i had those swimming lessons.  this was pre-ymca or swim school, so the lessons i had were at a motel pool across the street from the 7-11 where my friends and i would buy our 15 cent packs.  the card was creased and had some water damage (not as much as you might think), but i took it home.  eventually, it was replaced in my set and collection by a pack fresh version.  still, it was the first card i ever found just lying around somewhere.

even though i really like cooper's card, the one that makes the memorial binder is charlie moore's 1978 topps card
it's number 51 in the set, which means that it immediately follows rick reuschel's card with the black armband for philip k wrigley (the subject of today's earlier post).  that's a strong back-to-back memorial one-two punch.

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