Ya Get What Ya Get: Well-coiffed Men Named Basil And Other Athletes

During my COMC shopping spree late last year, I cast my net far and wide looking for unusual cards, and I think this one fits the bill.
1972 OPC CFL Basil Bark
This is a 1972 O-Pee-Chee CFL card of Calgary Stampeder Basil Bark.

Does a guy named Basil Bark make you think of football?

Does a friendly-looking guy with styled hair make you think of football?

No offense to Basil, but he looks more like a member of The Moody Blues than he looks like a football player.  (Full disclosure:  I love the Moodies… well, I love the “This Is The Moody Blues”-era Moodies).
1972 OPC CFL Basil Bark back
As the back of Basil’s card states, he was a two-time All-Star when he was with the Montreal Alouettes.

Moving on to more conventional areas of cardboardary, let’s check out this 1981 Kellogg’s Tug McGraw.
1981 Kelllogg's Tug McGraw
I never had any Kellogg’s cards in the 1970’s and 1980’s, but I’ve been making up for lost time. For a while I was just picking up certain teams and players, then I was also picking up cheap cards from any year. The more Kellogg’s I get, the more I realize that my feelings towards these cards vary greatly from year to year. I love 1970, and I’m thinking of attempting to complete the 1976 set.  Then there are cards like this where they went overboard with the border.  Less is more, guys, less is more.  Either way, I’m still going to pick up cards of guys like Tug.

I’m thinking that anyone out there is going to fall into one of four categories with this next card.
2012 Topps Finest Tsuyoshi Wada
Fans of NPB view it as an American rookie card of an outstanding Japanese pitcher.

Fans of the Cubs might say “Hey, it’s that guy who got called up from Iowa after Hammel and Samardzija got traded away! He was with the O’s?” (Note: I’m very pleased with myself because I spelled “Samardzija” correctly off the top of my head).

Fans of the Orioles will see the guy who signed a 2-year, $8M contract, pitched one game with AAA Norfolk before undergoing Tommy John surgery, and never pitched an inning in an Orioles uniform.

Everybody else will likely say “Yeah, whatever, what’s the next card?”

A former co-worker once told me about how he used to watch the Senators in the early 1970’s and enjoyed watching Bosman pitch.
1970 Topps Dick Bosman
He was a very good pitcher with generally bad teams. In 1969 he lead the AL with a 2.19 ERA, and in 1974 (while with Cleveland) he no-hit the soon-to-be-World-Champions A’s. In 1970 he went 16-12 for a team that lost 90 games. He’s also the second cousin of Duane Kuiper.

Just a little tangent before I go… I was looking at the transaction listings on Bosman’s baseball-reference.com page, and I saw that the Indians traded him and Jim Perry to the A’s for John “Blue Moon” Odom. After a couple of beats, I suddenly asked “Wait, Blue Moon Odom was on the Indians???” And the answer is “Yes… for a couple of weeks”. He made two relief appearances, pitched a 2-hit shutout of the Royals, and then was traded to the Braves. Odom’s final cardboard appearance came as a Brave in the 1976 set.

This discovery came the day after I found out that Rollie Fingers was with the Cardinals… for several days in December, 1980. The Cards got him from the Padres, got Bruce Sutter from the Cubs, and the Brewers said “Hey, you don’t really need two closers, do you…?” Just goes to show that you never know what you’ll find when you start digging into this stuff.

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2 thoughts on “Ya Get What Ya Get: Well-coiffed Men Named Basil And Other Athletes

  1. RCCMV* are my favorite kind of posts.

    If you were writing a novel and used the name Basil Bark people would immediately stop reading the book and donate it to Goodwill.

    *-Random Cool Cards Mostly Vintage

  2. BB WAS ONE OF THE BETTER CFL PLAYERS AT THAT TIME AND WAS ON 1971 GREY CUP WINNER WHILE WITH CALGARY STAMPEDERS …

    EXCELLENT TOPIC – WELL DONE !!!

    ALL THOSE OF US OF A CERTAIN [ NOW VERY OLD ] AGE USED TO HAVE OUR HAIR STYLED UP AT THAT TIME SO ALMOST ALL LOOKED QUITE SIMILAR WITH EXCEPTION OF US CHROME DOMIUS TYPES AND THE CREW CUT CROWD …

    YES, DICK BOSMAN WAS ONE OF THE BEST PITCHERS IN HIS TIME AND THE ONLY ONE IN MLB HISTORY TO EVER MISS A PERFECT GAME DUE TO HIS OWN FIELDING / THROWING ERROR IN 1974 … DANG !!!

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