Sunday, July 24, 2011

Five Random Cubs Cards

I've got 9,080 Cubs cards from 54 different brands listed on a spreadsheet. A random number generator picked five cards, one each from the past several decades.

1950s / 1960s: 1964 Topps Giant #17 Dick Ellsworth If you want to learn more about the 1964 Topps Giant see, you can look here. As the 1964 season began, Ellsworth was the ace of the Cubs staff, coming off of an impressive 22 win season. But he couldn't repeat that success in 1964 and reverted more to his ways of 1962, when he lost 20 games. In '64 he was 14-18. He was hampered by a sore arm throughout the season, probably a result of the 291 innings he pitched in 1963.

1970s: 1971 Topps #647 Juan Pizarro
How weird is this? It was just a few weeks ago that I had a North Side/South Side post featuring Juan Pizarro. Pizarro split the 1971 season between the AAA team in Tacoma and the Cubs. His record among the two was very similar...Tacoma/Cubs...Innings 127/101...Wins 9/7...Losses 6/6...ERA 3.61/3.48. The highlight of his '71 season was a one-hitter against the Padres on August 5.

1980s: 1981 Topps #381 Cubs Rookies
I've written about Steve Macko in the past, so today I'll just focus on Lezcano and Martz. Carlos Lezano was the less-successful cousin of Sixto Lezcano. I'm not sure why Topps put him on a rookie card, since he did play in 42 games for the Cubs in 1980. In '81 he spent only a few weeks on the roster replacing an injured Steve Henderson. In seven games he batted 14 times with only one hit. He never made it back to the majors.....Randy Martz pitched in 33 games for the '81 Cubs, splitting time between the rotation and the bullpen. For the season he was 5-7 with a 3.68 ERA. It was nothing spectacular, but not exactly rotten either. His season high point was a complete game win over the Reds on May 21.

1990s: 1992 Conlon #958 Lefty Weinert
I think this is the first time the random number generator has picked a card from the Conlon Collection. Though the card is from 1992, the player certainly isn't. Lefty Weinert's Cubs career spanned from 1927-1928. This is his first card, but it did come 19 years after the guy died. The season on the card is 1928, Lefty's second and final with the Cubs. He pitched in only 10 games and had an ERA of 5.29, but he was 1-0. I wonder if that is why it took until 1992 for Lefty to get a card?

2000s: 2007 Topps Opening Day #61 Alfonso Soriano
This card is from the time when Topps gave the Opening Day set a different color than the base set. I wish they would go back to doing that. The 2007 season was Soriano's first with the Cubs. He cost the team a bundle of money for a too-long contract, but in 2007 it was worth it. He was the NL player of the month in June. He was even bigger in September, as the Cubs were driving for the division title. He blasted 14 HR during the month and hit .320, carrying the Cubs almost single-handed to the top. But then he tanked in the NLDS, hitting only .143.

1 comment:

  1. I really like the 1964 Giant cards, the photos are really great. Pizarro pitched pretty well for the Cubs, maybe using him more would have helped in 1970 especially.
    I was at Wrigley for Steve Macko's last major league game, a doubleheader against the Pirates. He doubled and was pinch run for with Rick Reuschel...thought that was strange at the time thought Reuschel had done some PR before.