Collecting a 1960 Topps team set for the Orioles wasn’t much of a priority for me… until Sir Nick of the Dime Boxes sent me this 1960 Topps Brooks Robinson…
…Which started me on a medium-priority quest to complete the O’s team set, seeing how I’ve got the key card out of the way. This post features a number of cards I got at a show in July.
Albie Pearson was the 1958 AL Rookie of the Year with the Senators, and was an All-Star with the Angels in 1963, but in between he was an Oriole for two seasons.
Pearson split 1960 between the O’s and the AAA Miami Marlins, and would be drafted by the Angels in the expansion draft.
By the way, the scan of this card shows the pen marks on the front, but it’s hard to read… Years ago somebody had crossed out “Albie Pearson” and made this into an ersatz rookie card for Mike Epstein (who broke in with the Orioles in 1966 and 1967).
…So between the tape on the Brooks and the “updating” of the Albie Pearson, you can tell that condition is not an important criteria for me at this stage.
Chuck Estrada was a rookie sensation, going 18-11, pitching an inning in one of that year’s two all-star games, and was named the Sporting News’ AL Pitcher Of The Year.
Two years after leading the league with 18 wins, Estrada would lead the league with 17 losses. Elbow problems derailed his career and he ended up being a two-year wonder.
Just for funsies, I’ll include Estrada’s last card as a player (and the only card to show him as something other than an Oriole); he finished out his career with a 9.41 ERA in 9 games with the Mets in 1967.
Gene Green The Dancing Machine!!!!! (You must be of a certain age to get that reference).
Gene Green’s Oriole career consisted of one September game where he went 1-for-4. Like Albie Pearson, he’d be taken in the expansion draft after the 1960 season, only in his case he got drafted by the “New Senators”. Between trades and drafts, poor Gene appeared capless in three straight Topps sets… and you have to appreciate the awful little painted Oriole on the black & white “action” shot.
Speaking of traded players, Gordon Jones appears in a Giants cap even though he’d been traded to the Orioles the prior November. Jones pitched in 32 games with the O’s over two seasons.
We’ll wrap up with another player who was the AL Rookie of the Year, Walt Dropo. Dropo had a career year in 1950 at the age of 27, which is not in itself unusual, but in his case that was also his rookie year. Walt lead the league with 144 RBI, but also hit 34 homers and scored 101 runs, all career highs.
By the time he was with the O’s he was wrapping up a 13 year career.
I love the “Moose” cartoon on the back of Dropo’s card. “Hey, Rocky! Watch me pull a rabbit outta my hat!”