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Saturday, June 25, 2011

Bowman Beaters - Pittsburgh Pirates

Here's a couple of Pirates from the quarter stack. I don't even know what these two were doing in there, they are in better shape than most of my '55 Bowmans even with the water damage. Oh yeah I know, they're Pirates. You know how bad the Pirates have been for the past twenty years? in the early '50s they were worse. MUCH worse. The 1952 Pirate team is one of the worst of all time. By 1955, they were better but not much.

Sid Gordon was an All-Star for the New York Giants, played a few solid season for the Boston Braves and was traded to the Pirates when Hank Aaron was ready to take over in the outfield. Sid would get traded back to New York in '55. Check out the helmet on 'ol Sid. The Pirates were the first team to wear batting helmets in 1952. They were actually ordered by Team GM Branch Rickey to wear them on the field as well as when batting which is why Pirates cards from the mid-50s usually show the player in a helmet.

Vern Law is another All-Star who played his entire career for the Pirates. Vern was the ace of the champion 1960 Pirates and won the Cy Young award that year. Other than the bit of water damage on the right side, this card is damn near perfect as far as I'm concerned. No paper stuck to the front, none lost from the back. No creases. The gloss is glossy. The corners aren't perfect but they're all square which is more than I can say for most of my '55 collection. How did this card get into a quarter stack? Oh yeah, Pirates. If Vern was the third string catcher for the Yankees this is a twenty dollar card.

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