The Quest for the 1960 Topps Set, Part VIII
May 11th, 2010 by slangon

I’m still plugging away. One card at a time.

1960 Topps #558 Eddie Mathews All-Star

I’ve mentioned numerous times that one of the things I really love about the 1960 set, and therefore one of the major reasons I decided to make a go at completing it, is how many different, awesome looking designs are contained within it. The All-Star cards are yet another sweet design from this set, and one that has eluded me up until this point. I’m sure that has to do with the fact that the All-Star cards all fall within the scarcer seventh series. I guess a lot of that has to do also with the fact that, by their very nature, All-Star cards are usually, well… All-Stars and it’s obviously a lot harder to track down cards of star players at a reasonable price.

I really dig the back of this card thanks to the super sized cartoon. That’s one hell of a September that Eddie had himself. 11 taters and 25 rib-eyes. By the way, if you’re wondering, Mathews grounded into 123 double plays in his 17 year career. At the time this card came out, he had only hit into 54 over 8 seasons. And if you’re really wondering, the player who holds the record for most career GIDP…

Calvin Edwin Ripken Jr. with 350. He’s followed by Henry Louis Aaron (328), Carl Michael Yastrzemski (323), David Mark Winfield (319) and Edward Clarence Murray and James Edward Rice (tied with 315). I wouldn’t have thought that you’d be in such good company if you were prone to the double play.

Another piece of trivia of note concerning this card, they played 2 All-Star games every year at the time this card came out. In ’59, they played in Pittsburgh on July 7th and again in Los Angeles on August 3rd. In ’60, it was Kansas City on July 11th followed closely by Yankee Stadium on the 13th. (With all the criticism the All-Star game gets about how the rosters are handled, it’s interesting to think about how different things would be handled if the All-Star squads played a 3 game series, rather than just 1 game.) 1961 was split between San Francisco on July 11th and Fenway Park on July 31st. Interestingly, that game at Fenway resulted in a 1-1 tie due to rain. It was the only time an All-Star game ended in a tie until the infamous 2002 game. The last year of dual All-Star games came in 1962. They played in Washington on July 10th and again in Wrigley Field on July 30th. I personally love the All-Star game and would be psyched if they brought the 2 game format back, or better yet, followed my suggestion and played a 3 game series.

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