Wednesday, December 30, 2009
1998 UD3, Gary Matthews Jr.
#209 Gary Matthews Jr.
Here is the last card from 1998 and it has a lot going on in it. Of course, this is a Padrograph from Rod that features Gary Matthews Jr. This card is from the UD3 set and it has about everything that you would ever want a card to have. It has foil, three photos of the player, a bar code, and some other special effects jazz. You don't see too many cards like this anymore. This is about as far away from Topps Heritage as you can get.
This card makes the list as one of my favorite Padrographs. The reason for that is because of "The Catch".
The reason I like that card is because I was at the game where Gary made the catch.
I was on leave at the time and my buddy and I decided to head down to Texas to see the ballparks in Arlington, Houston, and Frisco. The first game we saw was on July 1st in Arlington. The Rangers were hosting the Astros for a Saturday day game and we had tickets for the bleachers just to the right of center field.
Mike Lamb came up to bat in the eighth inning. It was his fifth at-bat of the day and I happened to look at my scorecard when I noticed that he was a single away from the cycle. I have never seen a cycle before I was pretty excited since all he needed was a single.
Well, he ended up crushing the ball to deep center field instead. I was just watching the ball, wondering if it was going to make it out or not. I see Gary chasing the ball down out of my peripheral vision until he started to get close to the wall. Then I lost sight of him for a split second. Just as the ball was about to land in the batters eye, I see the top half of Gary pop out of nowhere and make this circus catch. It was unbelievable. It was hands-down the best play that I have ever seen in person and it happened about fifty feet from where I was seated. I couldn't wait to see the replay on Sports Center later on that night. That is going to be a tough catch to top.
I'm still waiting on seeing a cycle, though.