Friday, September 11, 2009

1953 Bowman Cubs

In this post I referred to my recent purchase of a reprint set of the 1953 Bowman Cubs. There were 11 Cubs in the set. Two or three are players you may have heard of. The rest…probably not unless you were following baseball in the ‘50’s (which I wasn’t, since I wasn’t born until 1961).

All of the pictures were taken at the Polo Grounds. The poses look like the same ones you would find on a Topps card.

Do any of you have any other cards from this set? Were all the NL pictures taken at the Polo Grounds? Was Yankee Stadium used for the AL?

I’ll start with the guys you may have heard of.

#48 – Hank Sauer Sauer won the NL MVP in 1952, but was hurt in 1953 and only played in 108 games.

#30 – Phil Cavarretta The Cubs manager played his last game in 1952 and was now a full-time manager. His ’53 Cubs finished 12 games worse than the year before, ending up in 7th place with a record of 65-89.

#154 – Turk Lown Turk went 8-7, mostly out of the bullpen. He would end up with an 11 season career, including several seasons on the south side with the Sox.

Here are the lesser known, in alphabetical order:

#94 – Bob Addis, he played in only 10 games for the Cubs and hit .167 before being traded to the Pirates in a nine player swap that brought the Cubs slugger Ralph Kiner and future broadcaster Joe Garagiola.

#112 – Toby Atwell, was also part of the big trade with the Pirates.

#42 – Tommy Brown, got into 65 games and hit .196, his final season in the major leagues.

#7 – Harry Chiti, his name says it all; Harry was a pretty Chiti player. He had a cup of coffee with the Cubs in ’50, ’51, and ’52, but wouldn’t resurface with them again until 1955.

#144 – Warren Hacker This is scary; Hacker was the ace of the ’53 staff and his record was 12-19 (the 19 losses were the most in the NL) with a 4.38 ERA. Ouch!

#71 – Paul Minner, the #2 starter on the team and one of several the Cubs got from the Dodgers organization.

#110 – Bob Rush After going 17-13 in 1952, he slipped to 9-14 in ’53. Like Lown, he too finished his career with the White Sox.

#122 – Bill Serna. The utility infielder has a decent season in 1953, hitting .251 and showing a little pop with 10 home runs.

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