Monday, September 18, 2017

1987 Topps, Dave Leiper

#441 Dave Leiper

Two summers ago, I flew out to the west coast to meet a buddy out there and watch some baseball. When we were traveling from Seattle to San Francisco, we stopped outside of Portland to take in a Hillsboro Hops game. Prior to going on the trip, I reached out Rod, from Padrographs, about meeting up in Hillsboro. He obliged and brought a care package with him to the game. In it was a large assortment of Padrographs. There were even a few non-Padre autographs and this is one of those.

I have no idea how Rod got this card. Dave did pitch for the Padres for a few seasons, so I can see Rod's interest in Dave's signature. My best guess is that he bought this card because it came with a signed Padres cards that he needed for his collection. But, that is just a guess.

Dave pitched in the Majors for eight seasons with the A's, Padres, Expos, and Phillies. He never started a Major League game and he never pitched more than 70 innings in a season. Over his career, Dave was 12-8 with 7 saves and a 3.98 ERA. His best season was with the Padres in 1988. That season, he pitched 54 innings and was 3-0 with a save and a 2.17 ERA.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

1987 Topps, Don Schulze

#297 Don Schulze

Here is the second card that Don Schulze signed for me at an Omaha Storm Chasers game two years ago. Don was the pitching coach for the Nashville Sounds at the time and he signed three cards for me while heading to the field. I posted the first card in June and that one can be seen here.

I can't believe that I was posting cards from 1985 in June. It is halfway through September and I haven't even made it through 1987 yet. If I ever get caught back up and get to posting my cards from 2008, it might take me three years to get all the way through them.

Don played for the Indians for three seasons and in each season, he pitched in 19 games. He started most of those and over his time in Cleveland, Don was 11-20 with a 5.30 ERA and 109 strikeouts.

On the last card of Don I posted, I complained about him being in the dark Indians batting practice jersey and how sigs on dark jerseys do not always work out. The sig on this card is obviously a lot easier to make out. It turns out that this is Don's only Indians card where he is not wearing the dark jersey. The other five Indians cards that he graces all have him in the warm-up jersey.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

1987 Topps, John Kruk

#123 John Kruk

Here is the fifth and final card of John Kruk that I got signed at the College World Series in 2014. I posted three cards of him with the Phillies later that year and those can be seen here, here, and here. I posted one other Padres card of him last month and that one can be seen here.

John played for San Diego for three full seasons. After hitting over .300 for his first two seasons, John's average dipped to .241 in his third season. In his fourth season, he got off to a slow start and was hitting just .184 over 31 games and the Padres decided to make a change. They shipped him and Randy Ready to the Phillies in exchange for Chris James. John finished his tenure with the Padres hitting .281 with 36 home runs and 179 RBI.

John went on to play for the Phillies for five and a half seasons. Over that time, he made three All Star teams and helped the club to the 1993 Wolrd Series. After the 1994 season, John signed with the White Sox and played his final season with them that year. John finished his career a .300 hitter with 100 home runs and 593 RBI. His best season was with the Phillies in 1991 when he hit .294 and had career-highs in homers (21) and RBI (92).

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

1987 Topps, Mark Salas

#87 Mark Salas

I cannot believe that it has been over a week since I have posted last. It has been some time since I have gone that long without a post. I was posting daily for a bit while I was looking for a job. While I am still on the job hunt, I found a job to keep me busy and bring in some kind of income; it's just not the job I want and it tends to take up more time than I like.

So, here is Mark Salas card number five. This one, like the last two of Mark, were signed at Kauffman Stadium by the visiting team's bullpen. Mark works for the White Sox and one might assume that he is the bullpen coach for the club. That is not the case. Mark is actually the bullpen catcher. Mark is 56 years-old and he is still able crouch down behind a plate. I am not even 40 yet and I could not do that job.

Mark played with the Twins for two and a half seasons. Over that time, he hit .279 with 20 home runs and 83 RBI. His best season came with them in 1985 when he hit .300 with career-highs in homers (9) and RBI (41).

Monday, September 4, 2017

1987 Topps, Dave Lopes

#4 Dave Lopes

In April, I posted an '81 Donruss of Davey that I got signed through the mail in 2014. I got this card signed that same year, but this one was in-person. The Dodgers, whom Davey coached for at the time, made a rare visit to Kansas City that summer. My Dad and I went up early so I could do some 'graphing and this was the one card of Davey that I got signed that day. As you can tell, I was having fun getting subset cards signed that year. Just look at the Steve Carlton Superstar Special that I posted last week for evidence of that.

Dave's career was practically over by the time this card came out. 1987 was his last season as a player and he only got into 47 games with the Astros and had just 43 at-bats. He hit .233 that final season with a home run and 6 RBI. For his career, Davey hit .263 with 155 home runs and 614 RBI. Plus, he stole 557 bases while making four All Star teams and winning one Gold Glove.

This card is commemorating Davey's feat of having the most stolen bases in a season for a 40 year-old. The season was split between the Cubs and Astos and Davey was able to swipe 25 bags on 33 attempts. The previous record was 23 and set by Honus Wagner in 1914. I still find it odd that Topps made this card, but did not do one for Steve Carlton's 4,000th strikeout.

Sunday, September 3, 2017

1987 Procards, Jerry Terrell

#2248 Jerry Terrell

This is the second card of Jerry Terrell that I was able to get signed at Royals Fanfest last year. I posted the first one about nine months ago and that one can be seen here. My dad actually got that card signed for me while Jerry was doing some instructing by the wiffleball field. I got this one signed later on that day when Jerry appeared at an autograph table.

That was my first encounter with Jerry and he was a super-friendly individual. Even though most people that had a card of him had one from his playing days, he seemed to reminiscence a little more when he saw this card. I guess that could be because there are not too many minor league cards of him out there.

1987 was Jerry's first season as a minor league manager and it did not go so well. His Royals finished the season 54-87, 30.5 games back of the St. Petersburg Cardinals. The Kansas City Royals left Ft. Myers for Baseball City for Spring Training in 1988 and did not put a Florida State team back in Ft. Myers. I am not sure where they moved their affiliate, but I do know that they did not take Jerry with them. He would not manage a minor league team again until 1999.

I have had this team set for over twenty years and this is just the third card that I have been able to get signed. Still, it is always fun when I am able to add another sig to the set.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

1987 Fleer, Steve Carlton

#635 Steve Carlton

Here is a fun card of Steve Carlton that I got signed at the College World Series in 2014. This is the third and final card that I got signed that day. The first one, his '81 Donruss, can bee seen here and the second one here.

On August 5th, 1986, Steve struck out Eric Davis to record his 4,000th career strikeout. In my opinion, that is quite a milestone. At that point, he was just the second pitcher to ever record 4,000 strikeouts. Yet, for some reason, this is the only base card of Steve commemorating that feat. While Donruss never really had a subset for milestones or record breakers, Topps did at that time and this one went unrecognized by them. I think it is funny that Steve broke the record while with the Giants, but us shown with the White Sox on this card, though.

In case you are wondering, Steve is now fourth on the all-time strikeout leaderboard with 4,136 K's. Nolan Ryan is first, followed by Randy Johnson and then Roger Clemens.

It is so strange seeing Steve with the White Sox. It is about as strange as seeing Tom Seaver with them.