Sunday, December 15, 2013
1985 Topps, Don August
#392 Don August
Here is a card that I sent out to get signed just because I love the subset. 1984 was the first year that baseball was in the Olympics, even though it wasn't a medal sport. To commemorate the event, Topps included these cards in the '85 set. All of the players were amateurs and a few of them went on to successful Major League careers.
Baseball became a medal event for the '92 games and lasted through 2008. Baseball was eliminated from the Olympics after that mainly because the best players in the world are not involved. The only way I see baseball back in the Olympics is if Major League Baseball finds a way to let its best players compete. The NHL does it by pausing its season for two weeks every four years. Personally, I think MLB is happy enough with its World Baseball Classic that it could care less if baseball was in the Olympics.
In five Olympics, gold medals were awarded to Cuba three times, with the USA and South Korea each with one. Team USA also won two bronze medals. Other countries to medal in baseball have been Japan, Chinese Taipei, and Australia.