25 July 2015

et tu, bill russell?

steve garvey wore a padres uniform.  ron cey suited up for the cubs and a's.  davey lopes wore the uniform of the a's, cubs, and astros as a big league player, and then wore rangers, padre, brewers, nationals, and phillies gear as a coach/manager at the big league level.  there are plenty of cards that show evidence of those three infielders wearing non-dodger uniforms, but i didn't think that was the case for the fourth - bill russell.

there was only one season in which russell wore a non-dodger uniform in the major leagues, and it was in 2000 when he served as the bench coach for the tampa bay devil rays.  i didn't think that there were any cards showing russell in his devil ray gear, and i may be correct, but i did stumble across this card, a 1999 multi-ad sports orlando rays card 
showing the shortstop of the team of my youth as the manager for tampa bay's triple-a team the year before joining the big league club as its bench coach.  this came after russell was fired by the fox folks and our hopes of another long-tenured dodger manager were dashed.  any and all cards of bill russell have a place in my collection, so i was happy to find this one.  and, apparently, there is another minor league card of russell showing him as the skipper for the shreveport swamp dragons in 2002. that was a giants farm team (shudder).

speaking of giants, i also found a couple of cards showing reggie smith, the right fielder for the team of my youth, wearing giant gear.  although, it's not san francisco giant duds, it's the uniform of the yomiuri giants
both cards are from the 2013 bbm legendary foreigners 2: deep impact set, according to check out my cards.  both cards are incredibly awesome, as well.  after spending one season (1982) with the nocal giants, reggie went to japan for a tumultuous year and a half, starting in 1983.  that second 'off shot' card is pretty cool, with reggie tipping his cap.  it would fit in my 'nob' mini collection, although i still haven't made that an official thing.  

i do have an official 'tatooine collection' featuring cards with nothing but dirt in the photo background.  this 2006 topps mickey mantle 2002 card fits the bill.
in 2006, topps essentially created mantle cards for all of the sets that had left card number 7 vacant - i believe it was from 1997 on.  still waiting for a mantle in the 1978 topps design...

moving along with some other recent pick-ups, there are few images that work better for companies without a license to use logos than the maskless catcher in gear.  such is the case with this 2013 panini elite extra edition mike piazza historic picks insert
there were 75 rounds in the 1988 draft, although not all teams participated in all rounds, and piazza is the lowest pick in the draft to make it to the majors.  the dodgers took eric karros 56 rounds earlier, in the sixth round of that draft.

speaking of sixth round draft picks, here's a shiny matt kemp 2011 topps finest refractor of matt kemp
kemp was the dodgers' sixth rounder in 2003.  i also grabbed a 2007 topps chrome blue refractor parallel of kemp
for my latest target as far as team sets go.  also new to the collection towards that endeavor are rafael furcal
derek lowe
and jason schmidt
just four left - randy wolf, andre ethier, takashi saito, and greg maddux.

another team set i am working on, but not really, is the 1953 topps team set.  i added rube walker
to my collection, but there are still many high ticket cards to be had before i am complete with that one.  someday, perhaps.

i began this post with one of the infielders for whom this blog is named in a strange uniform and ended it with a 1953 topps card of a brooklyn dodger named rube who later became a pitching coach, including for the mets during gil hodges' managerial reign and beyond.  as such, walker appeared on a couple of topps cards in 1973 and 1974 as a coach.  i wish the same luxury was afforded russell in 2000.

No comments: