Friday, March 1, 2013

1961 Topps A.L. Stolen Base Leaders

Luis Aparicio stole 51 bases to claim the title for the 5th time in his 5th year in the Majors. In 1960 the Go Go Sox stole 122 bases. The next closest team in the A.L. had 66, just over half. It was their aggressive running style that put them at the near top of most every offensive category in 1960 despite hitting the 2nd fewest homers that year. 

His teammate, Jim Landis, was second in the league with 23. Landis, the Gold Glove centerfielder for the White Sox, finished in the top 5 in stolen bases for 4th consecutive year in only his 4th major league season.

Lenny Green had career highs in stolen bases, triples and batting average for the 1960 Washington Senators. In 1961 the former Washington Senators became the Minnesota Twins and Washington was awarded an expansion team also called the Senators. Topps elected to refer to the former Senators as "Minn." on the League Leader cards in 1960. 

Al Kaline was the biggest surprise on this card. I never really thought of the slugger as a threat on the basepaths.  Although Kaline had a career high of 19 stolen bases, 1960 was somewhat of an off year for the future Hall of Famer. His batting average dropped nearly 50 points from 1959 to 1960. He hit 12 fewer homers and his slugging percentage dropped by over 100 points. For the 1st time in 3 years he wasn't awarded the Gold Glove and for the 1st time since his Rookie season he didn't receive any MVP votes. But even a off year for Kaline is better than most players' career years. He was still selected to both All Star games in 1960. He hit a 2 run homer in the first game and in the second game singled and walked in his 2 plate appearances in game 2.

No comments:

Post a Comment