Monday, October 7, 2019

1984 Topps Stadium Statues: 2019 ALDS - Twins vs Yankees Edition

Rod Carew played at Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington, Minnesota, the current location of the Mall of America. His Statue is at Target Field, a 40 minute Metro ride north of the Mall.  Between Metropolitan Stadium and Target Field, the Twins played at The Hubert Humphrey Metrodome. That is now the site of the US Bank Stadium, where the Vikings play. 

Although Yogi Berra spent the bulk of his career in Yankee Stadium, it was a different Yankee Stadium that was located one block south of the current one in the Bronx.  Yogi's statue is in the Yankees Museum. The Museum is located on the main level of Yankee Stadium near Gate 6. 

For those keeping score, just 2 out of 8 actually played in the ballpark where these statues are located. 

Saturday, October 5, 2019

1984 Topps Stadium Statues: 2019 NLDS - Nationals vs Dodgers Edition

Needless to say neither of these Hall of Famers played in the ballparks where their statues exist. Walter Johnson played for the American League Washington Senators team that (long after his retirement) moved to Minnesota and be came the Twins.  Jackie Robinson, of course, never moved west when the Dodgers fled Brooklyn.

 The Walter Johnson statue, along with the statues of Josh Gibson and Frank Howard, tries to capture the action.  The artists sculpted multiple arms in motion to depict this.  The Robinson statue also depicts action, with Jackie frozen in his slide into home plate.  Not to be an art critic, but I prefer the Robinson. It's less messy.

One more note about both of these fields.  They both retained the team name. No corporate sponsored names, just Nationals Park and Dodgers Stadium. That is a rarity these days.

Friday, October 4, 2019

1984 Topps Stadium Statues: 2019 ALDS - Rays vs Astros Edition

This life-size Boggs statue is across from his display in Ted Williams' Hitters' Hall of Fame at Tropicana Field. The statue commemorates his 3000th hit. It happened to be a two run homer in Tampa Bay.  The Bagwell Statue is outside another domed stadium named after orange juice, Minute Maid Park.  These guys are both depicted in possibly the ugliest uniforms in the respective franchises' histories.   

My favorite Houston uni is the Original Colt .45 home uniforms, followed closely by the Tequila Sunrise '70s uni.  The Rays hands-down-best is their 70's faux-back based loosely on the San Diego Padres of that era. There may be some room for discussion on Houston uniforms, but the 70's faux-back is the only correct answer for Tampa Bay.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

1984 Topps Stadium Statues: 2019 NLDS - Cardinals vs Braves Edition

I did this a few years back. Statues outside stadiums have been a booming business. It seem like there a few more every season. The 1984 design is just best suited to capture these statues and a photo of the player.  

Neither of these players played in the present day stadiums.  In fact Spahn never played in Atlanta. He played for the Braves in Boston and Milwaukee.  Brock played in the first two Busch Stadiums. The original AKA Sportsman's Park and the second which was an astroturfed multipurpose monstrosity in the fashion of the late 60s and early 70s.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

1971 NFL Rookies of the Year

In 1971 there were a total of  5 different Rookie of the year presenters each giving out 2 awards each. Some were divided among offensive and defensive, others AFC or NFC. But for the most Part they were in agreement and the 10 awards were split between 3 players; John Brockington, Jim Plunkett and Isiah Robertson. None of these players had Topps cards in 1971. All three made their Topps debut the following year.

John Brockington won 4 different Rookie of the year honors. He was named NFC ROY by The Sporting News (TSN), United Press International (UPI) and the Newspaper Enterprise Association (NEA).  He was also named Offensive ROY by the Associated Press (AP). Brockington was the Packers 1st round pick from Ohio State. He was a 3 time Pro Bowler.

Jim Plunkett also collected 4 Rookie of the Year awards. He was the AFC Rookie of the Year per TSN, UPI and NEA. He was crowned Offensive ROY by Pro Football Weekly (PFW). Plunket was the overall #1 pick in the 1971 Draft. He was the 1970 Heisman Award winner for Stanford beating out Joe Theisman and Archie Manning. He led the Raiders to 2 Super Bowl victories despite being the back up quarterback both seasons.  I made this card several years ago for Jim from Downingtown's 1971 Football Cards blog.

Isiah Robertson was named Defensive ROY by both PFW and AP. Robertson was the Rams 1st round pick in 1971 out of Southern University. He was a six time Pro Bowler for the Rams. He was traded to the Bills in 1978 and was among the highest paid linebackers at the time.