1975 “MVP” Project: 1965 Topps Zoilo Versalles

I won’t get into the full explanation of this project, especially when I wrote about it last year, but the general idea is this:  I loved the 1975 “MVP subset when I was a kid, and I somewhat recently decided last year that even if getting all of the featured cards wasn’t realistic for me, that doesn’t mean I can’t get *some* of the cards.

Honestly, calling this a “project” is overselling it a bit, because not a huge priority…  Not so much a chase as it is a ‘side gig’.

In this post I’m going to feature one of my recent COMC acquisitions, a 1965 Topps card of AL MVP Zoilo Versalles.

Here’s the card from the 1975 subset…

Here’s the actual card…

As with other cards I’ve obtained so far, ‘1975 Me’ is still gaping at this, saying “WOW, AFTER ALL THIS TIME I’VE GOT THIS CARD!”

…And now I can see the back!  The cartoon is fairly uninteresting by 1965 standards.  You can also see from the pen mark and small amounts of scotch tape why I got this card cheap.  The front presents well, so this grades as a “Shlabotnik 10”.

So why was Zoilo Versalles the 1965 AL MVP?

The 1965 Twins won 102 games, finished 7 games ahead of the 2nd place White Sox but lost the World Series to the Dodgers in 7 games. Versalles lead the league in runs (126), doubles (45), triples (12), extra-base hits (76) and total bases (308).  In addition he hit for a .273 average with 77 RBI and 27 stolen bases.  He also lead AL shortstops with 105 double plays.

Versalles easily won the MVP voting with 19 first place votes and 275 points, with teammate Tony Oliva finishing second with 1 first place vote and 174 points.  In winning the award he became the first MVP in either league who was not born in the USA.


2 thoughts on “1975 “MVP” Project: 1965 Topps Zoilo Versalles

  1. It’s kind of odd – I never really wanted the cards on the MVP cards (I mean, I did but it was never a realistic goal) but I wanted to make sure that I had the MVP cards each year after that. So somewhere in one of the few binders I still have MLB cards in I have a bunch of Topps cards of the MVPs from the early 80’s until about 2001 when (1) I started collecting NPB cards exclusively and (2) Ichiro’s 2001 Topps rookie card cost more than I wanted to spend on a side-project.

    That subset had such an impact on me that I can still recite the MVPs from 1951 to 1974 more readily that I can for the last 24 years. And every year I’ve been writing my Japanese card blog I’ve made a point to do a post showing the BBM cards of the two league MVPs.

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