Friday, February 17, 2012

1975 Topps 1962 Rookies of the Year

In 1962 both Rookie of the Year players made their way onto a regular issue Topps card. Both players also had short careers, but for different reasons.

Tresh's 1962 season was spent as a replacement at shortstop for 1957 Rookie of the Year Tony Kubek who was on military leave. He batted a career high .286 which was 41 points higher than his career average. He also hit .321 in the 1962 World Series including a 3 run blast in game 5 that proved to be the winning shot. When Kubek returned Tresh moved to the outfield where he would earn a Gold Glove in 1965. When his batting average diminished the Yankees traded him to the Tigers in 1969 who then released him in 1970.

Ken Hubbs was another great fielder but poor hitter. He was the first player to earn a Gold Glove in his rookie year. He also led the league in strikeouts and grounding into double plays in 1962. In 1963 his batting average dropped from a somewhat respectable .260 to .235. Hubbs crashed his private aircraft in February 1964 in Utah. Topps release a "In Memoriam" card featuring Hubbs in 1964. 

Ken Hubbs would appear on one more card in 1966 when Topps inadvertently used his photo on a Dick Ellsworth card.

1 comment:

  1. Tresh had a 9-year career. Do you consider that to be short?

    I don't understand the thought process behind Topps (and others) making cards for players years after they have retired. (For example, it makes no sense to me to have a Mickey Mantle card in the 1987 style.)

    I can see making cards for players who didn't have cards during their playing career (such as pre-1967 cards for Maury Wills and Chris Short). Maybe even a "wrap-up" card the year after retirement (1967 Sandy Koufax, Robin Roberts, etc). But a Mantle card in the 1970s or 1980s?