Tom Bianco… was drafted third overall by the Brewers in the June 1971 draft, played 9 years in the minors, but only appeared in 18 Major League games. Over the past 20 or so years, a top draft pick would be featured on numerous prospect cards, but if there’s another nationally-distributed card of Bianco, I can’t find it.
Bobby Mattick, the Brewers’ director of scouting at the time of the 1971 draft, called Bianco the best hitter available in that year’s draft. Just in case you wonder if that’s faint praise, other hitters taken in that draft include Jim Rice (drafted 15th overall), George Brett (29th overall) and Mike Schmidt (30th overall)
In 1976, Tom Bianco… batted .268/10/61 for the AAA Spokane Indians, the Brewers’ top farm team.
Betcha didn’t know: Granted, “Betcha didn’t know” isn’t the best heading within a post about a guy you likely hadn’t heard of, but Tom’s father Tony was a Gold Gloves boxer in the 1930’s.
Shea-o-meter: Many of the photos in 1976 SSPC were taken in Shea Stadium; Every team came through Shea because the Yankees were temporarily playing in Shea while Yankee Stadium was being renovated. “Can two Major League teams share a ballpark without driving each other crazy?”
I’m tempted to call this one for Shea, but I have to put it under “Can’t Tell”.
Pretty sure it’s Shea: 7
Can’t tell: 9
Not Shea: 6