The Quest for the 1960 Topps Set, Part V
April 12th, 2010 by slangon

I was able to knock off a few more cards thanks to some low bid wins on eBay.

First up is Joe Nuxhall.

Joe Nuxhall had a pretty good, if unspectacular career in the Majors. He posted a lifetime 135-177 record with a 3.90 ERA and 1372 strikeouts over 16 seasons. He made the All-Star twice, in 1955 and 1956. By the time this card came out, it seems he hit the skids a bit, going 9-9 in 1959 and 1-8 in 1960. The Reds, who he’d played for his entire career til then, traded him to Kansas City who sent him to the Angels who sent him back to Cincinnati. He bounced back pretty nicely upon returning to Cincinnati, ¬†going 41-28 in his final four seasons. Of course, Joe is best known for being the youngest player ever to appear in a major league game in the modern era, pitching 2/3 of an inning for the Reds on June 10, 1944 at the age of 15 years, 316 days. Due to America’s involvement in the war, there weren’t many options for trying to field a Major League caliber team, so owners often had no choice but to sign 15 year olds to round out their rosters. Another notable war-time oddity was Pete Gray, the One-Armed Wonder.

Next we have The Old Perfesser.

Casey has got to be one of my favorite characters in the history of the game. Of course it make me love him just a little more that he was the original manager of the Mets. To me, some of his most memorable “Stengelese” quotes came out of the ineptitude of those early Mets teams. I had posted a while back about one of my favorite Stengel Mets stories. Another good one came when he was comparing then rookies Ed Kranepool and Greg Goossen. Casey pointed out, “See that fellow over there? (referring to Kranepool) He’s 20 years old. In 10 years he has a chance to be a star. Now, that fellow over there (referring to Goossen), he’s 20, too. In 10 years he has a chance to be 30.” Classic.

Last up, we have The Chairman of the Board. And I’m not talking about Sinatra.

I’m glad to get yet another Hall of Famer out of the way from this set. By my count, there were 36 guys in this set that went on to be voted into the Hall. Several had multiple cards in this set for a total of 51 cards featuring Hall of Fame members. I have 16 now. Not too bad. Actually, having gone through the exercise of figuring out how many cards in this set have a Hall of Famer on them, I’d be interested in seeing which Topps set has the most HOF members. That’s a project for another day I guess.

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