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Monday, October 12, 2009

Cards of the Week - Holiday edition



Canadian Thanksgiving!

I hope all you hosers out there ate a lotta turkey or back bacon or whatever ya'll eat up there for Thanksgiving or at least downed a few beers, caught a hockey game on the tube and made a drunken Tim Horton's run in the snow. You guys do it right, no crazy ass shopping madness the day after. In honor of Canada and all things Canadian, Here's a Canadian Great:

Jeff Reardon was a helluva closer. 367 saves, the first closer to 350 and for a brief time was the all time leader in saves before Lee Smith and Eck passed him. The man wasn't called Terminator for nothing. He had his greatest years with the Expos before winning a championship in 1987 with Minnesota, which is practically Canada anyway. I was always a fan of Jeff just for the beard if nothing else. Then he was traded to the Bravos in 1992 for the playoff stretch and helped them fend off the Reds (sorry, Joe). Some Braves fans still hold the infamous Ed Sprague home run in game 2 of the World Series against Toronto. I don't hold it against him (and won't hold it against Canada, at least for today*) because he won a game in that year's playoffs. A game in the NLCS, as a matter of fact. THE LAST GAME. Yep, Sid got him the win!

Jeff has suffered through some terrible tragedy since his playing career ended and was bounced his first year of Hall eligibility even though he's one of the top ten closers of all time. People who know the '80s know this is terribly unfair to one of the best of the decade. I know Jeff was a great closer and it's time to remember the good things again.

So why Canadian Thanksgiving? Isn't there another holiday today? Something about 1492? Forget that, man... Columbus was a fink and the Vikings got here first anyway!

YEAAAAAH VIKINGS! I picked up this card from that show I told you about last week. Turns out it was a one man card show, but that guy was the best dealer from the big time card show I went to last year at the Cobb Civic Center. The guy with Turkey Reds and Babe Ruths and pristine Clementes and Mantles and 1954 AARONS and piles and piles of vintage as far as the eye could see, or at least 20 feet or so. He was back in town (and will be back again in January) with the thing I wanted to see most, THE CHEAPO BOX. I picked out some great stuff (too much stuff, actually) that I will show off as time allows. This card here was part of a Non-Sports binge that I shouldn't have done in retrospect, but I couldn't resist. I love flag cards and this "PARADE - Flags of the World" card was too cool and too old looking to resist. There's a Viking on the back! Raaar! Skeery Viking! AND LIEF ERICSSON BEAT CHRIS BY 500 YEARS! Sez so right on the back.

I had no clue who did this set when I bought the card. It just looked cool and was obviously a pretty old bubble gum card. Turns out it was an early Topps set! Various links identify it as being from 1949, 1950 or maybe 1951. Wikipedia says 1949 and they couldn't possibly be wrong, so until I find a vintage non-sports card price guide on the cheap I'm going to go with that. Oddly enough, this card I bought as an afterthought just because it looked cool is now the oldest Topps card in my collection. Funny, that.

* Every game the Braves lost that series we lost by one freaking run. Good Grief.


shanediaz82 said...

Great post, I had no idea what had happened to Reardon after his playing days. Poor guy...

Luis Leal said...

Thanks for the Canuck well wishes!

That Jeff Reardon story is incredibly sad. I remember watching an awful lot of Expos games on the French channel & Mr. Reardon was incredible.

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Bay Rat North West said...

Nothing to apologize for about 1992.
1990's World Series stats:
Reds - 1 World Series appearance - Sweep the A's. 100% success rate.
Braves - 16 World Series appearances, loose 15 and beat hapless, crying, ladies on the Indians in one. You do the math.
Have a great day and happy late birthday.