Thursday, January 7, 2010

196(9) At A Time - Page 73

Today's page features one on baseball's all-time greatest and nine of the not so greats. There are also two more future Cubs, which brings the Cubs total to within one of the airbrushed. There are only two pages left after this one....will the Cubs overtake the airbrushed??? Can you feel the excitement building?? :)

#644 - Chuck Hinton Hinton broke into the majors with the Senators in 1960 at the relatively old age of 27. By 1968 he was 34 and losing his stroke, hitting only .195. That cost him his starting job in his only season with the Angels. The Indians reacquired him (he played in Cleveland from 1965 - 1967) and as a backup in 1969 he played in 94 games and was able to raise his average to .265.

#645 - George Brunet I'm not sure why he is hatless, since he had been with the Angels since 1964. Surely Topps would have had a picture of him since then? Brunet had the distinction of leading the American League in losses two years in a row, with 19 in 1967 and 17 in 1968. And he still had a job! He continued in the Angels rotation in 1969, going 6-7 (yes, only 7 losses) before they finally tired of him and sold him to the Pilots. He was 2-5 in Seattle, ending the season with a mere 12 losses

#646 - Expos Rookies McGinn was the Expos' closer in 1969 and led the team with 74 apperances. He was 7-10 with a 3.94 ERA, which seems kind of high for a closer. His ERA the next two seasons was over 5, so he went where pitchers with ERAs over 5 go, to the Cubs. His ERA with the 1972 Cubs....was over 5 (5.89 to be exact). 1972 was his final year in the majors. Morton made the team out of spring training, was sent back to AAA in May, and then returned to the Expos as a September call-up. 1970 was his year, going 18-11 and winning the NL Rookie of the Year.

#647 - Dave Wickersham
So what did the photographer say to get Dave to crack up like that? Maybe Dave is just happy to be in a big league camp. He broke into the majors in 1960, and won 19 games for the Tigers in 1964, but by 1968 he spent a considerable part of the season in AAA. The Royals purchased him from the Pirates over the winter and he made 34 relief appearances for Kansas City. The Royals traded him after the season and he never again pitched in the big leagues.

#648 - Bobby Wine He is pictured in a Phillies uniform, where he played from 1960 - 1968. Wine was the Expos regular shortstop in 1969, as he was reunited with his longtime skipper in Philadelphia, Gene Mauch. It was his glove, not his bat, that kept Wine in the lineup, hitting only .200.

#649 - Al Jackson The patch on his sleeve is a 1964 New York Worlds Fair patch. Topps really had to dig deep in the files for this photo! But since its a Met, I don't really care how old a picture Topps used!

#650 - Ted Williams I'm guessing Ted's picture wasn't taken by the same photographer that took Dave Wickersham's. Smile a big league manager! Oh, it's the I understand the look on your face. The 1969 Senators actually had a decent season, winning 86 games, the most ever for this incarnation of the Senators. In fact, it was the only time they finished over .500 in their 11 seasons.

#651 - Gus Gil This card gives us our best look at the plain uniforms and hat that the Pilots wore in spring training. When the season started, they were much better looking.

Gil played in 92 games for the Pilots as a utility infielder and hit .222.

#652 - Eddie Watt Nice lump of chew, Eddie. Watt had a great season in 1969, making 56 appearances out of the bullpen. He was 5-2 with a sparkling 1.65 ERA. His career ended in 1974 with a six game stint with the Cubs. His ERA was not as sparkling, 13.50.

I should go back and count how many times I wrote about a player whose career ended with the Cubs. Wrigley Field - the Friendly Confines and the place where old washed up players go to die.

Overall Set Totals (player cards only)
Hall of Famers - 45
Hatless - 145
Airbrush - 99
Cubs (includes past, present, or future) - 98


  1. Wrigley Wax, I've thoroughly enjoyed following your trip through the 1969 set. I have the entire set also (well, I did have them all, but my Johnny Bench card has gone missing!).

    Although the early series are littered with airbrushed and hatless photos, the last 2 series are my favorite, as we start to see players in the new Royals, Pilots, Padres, and Athletics uniforms (and yes, even the Expos clown suits!).

    Regarding the cards in this post:

    Ted Williams - Topps has created a 1-man update set here, as a card for the Senators' previous manager Jim Lemon was in one of the early series.

    Bobby Wine - Wine was on the Expos only because pitcher Larry Jackson (drafted from the Phillies) refused to report to the Expos - figuring that retirement was more promising than starting from scratch in Montreal. The Phillies offered one of several players, and the Expos chose Wine. (They had also drafted Gary Sutherland, another Phillies' shortstop.)

    George Brunet - I can recall looking at the back of George Brunet's 1967 card many years ago, and being amazed at how many teams he had played for. I think it was 10 or 12 - and that was when there was only 20 teams!

  2. Bobby Wine looks like the warden from Shawshank.