Somehow, I Managed to Pull Off a Trade
April 4th, 2011 by slangon

A few weeks ago, Mark from the aptly titled Mark’s Ephemera had gotten in touch with me and said he had a bunch of junk-era manager cards put aside for me. I said bring ’em on and he did. Although I was sorely tempted to scan and post them all, because I’m sure no one in the history of card blogs has had the audacity to write a post consisting of a kajillion manager cards from the late 80’s and early 90’s. I’m sure it would’ve gotten me into the record books. In the end I decided I would narrow it down to a few, for the sake of my readers.

Here’s a young-ish Tony LaRussa. Even though this card is from a million years ago, he already had 13 seasons under his belt as a manager, and was coming off of 3 consecutive A.L. Pennants including a World Series win.

And here’s the man who took over for LaRussa when he left Oakland to manage the Cardinals. He also was a much maligned manager of the Mets in ’03 and ’04, when they were in a weird period of unproven rookies (Wright, Reyes) and fading stars (Piazza). Looking at the lineups of those teams, I blame Howe a little less for his time in Queens.

And here’s the man who preceded Art Howe as the skipper of the Mets. He’s definitely one of my all-time favorite Mets managers. He was pretty successful during his 6 seasons with the club, going over .500 every year except for one and taking them to the playoffs twice, including a World Series loss to the Yankees. More than his track record, he’s one of my favorites because he was a wacky dude.

This card has nothing to do with the one before it. I just thought the photo was really awesome. It’s like the prototypical manager photo. Although not as cool as this one.

Tom Kelly took over a next to last place team in September of 1986 and won the World Series the next year. That’s got to count for something.

There’s very few Sparky Anderson cards that I don’t like. I think it’s because he’s such a mean looking dude I’m afraid to not like them. I’m also partial to dugout shots.

Roger Craig, aside from being the manager of the Giants, was an original Met. His combined record for 1962 and 1963 was 15-46. Yes. He lost 46 games over the course of 2 seasons.

Oddly enough, Gene Mauch has a card in the 1988 Topps set, but he managed his last game on October 4, 1987. Isn’t that enough time to scrub the Mauch card and whip up a Cookie Rojas card?

Leyland is another manager who should be proud of the fact that he took over a last place team and turned it into a 1st place team just a few years later. Then they were back in last by the time he was done.

I’ve always been a fan of the loud mouthed, hot headed manager type.

It sort of makes me a little sad that there’s no more “Doc’s” managing in the Majors. Hell, there’s not even any “Whiteys”. I think the best we got nowadays is a “Buddy”, a “Dusty” and a “Buck”.

I don’t particularly like these 2-for-1 manager cards from the ’93 set, but I do kind of appreciate the change of pace. It’s almost like even though I don’t really like them, I’m glad that they did them.

Mark also threw in this Canadian beauty, appropriately enough of Montreal Expos skipper Jim Fanning. I always enjoy the updates that they slap on there, such as pointing out that Jim is now VP of Player Development and Scouting. What I never understood, though, is if you have time to add that change to the card, why don’t you just make a card of Buck Rodgers, who took over for Fanning? By the way, I think that’s either Martina Navratilova or Sig Hansen in the background there.

Like most trades, Mark also threw in a handful of unexpected goodies when he sent out this package. Here’s some of my favorites.

He tossed in a couple of older team cards that I needed. They both were from the 1981 set, which happens to be one of my favorites.

The hats are what make me love this set, especially when they’re 2-tone, like on the Expos hat. Speaking of the Expos card, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a team card that featured a picture that was taken in a dark, dreary hall before. It actually contrasts kind of nicely with the bright, sunny lawn-shot on the Giants card.

He aslo threw in a couple of 1985 Fleer stickers.

I particularly like the jersey/team pennant sticker. After seeing this card, I’m actually semi-interested in trying to collect this whole set just because 1985 was a, shall we say, “interesting” time for baseball jerseys.

Mark also included Bobby Bo’s prom picture. I actually had no idea that Ultra Pro ever made cards, but I guess it makes sense as a business model. Here’s some cards for you to buy, and while you’re at it, we have some protective sleeves for you to put them in. It’s like a crack dealer also having crack pipes for sale.

Finally, Mark saw fit to send me this Mel Ott card from the ’91 Sporting News Conlon Collection. I had actually wanted to pick up a few of these for a while just because the photography of Charles Conlon is just incredible. I also like the set because it includes a ton of old timey guys who probably otherwise wouldn’t be included in a relatively modern set. After seeing this one, I’ll definitely have to look into getting some more.

Mark also sent me a few other really cool cards, but they’ll be getting their own posts somewhere down the road. Thanks again for the great cards and for putting a nice sized dent in my manager and team card checklists, Mark.

One Response to “Somehow, I Managed to Pull Off a Trade”

  1. Glad to be of help. Thanks for the return package.

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