Recap: I’m going through all of the notable and somewhat notable players and managers of the 1970’s and I’m basically making like it’s an all-encompassing 1970’s throwback baseball card set. For the “card front”, I’m sharing my favorite 1970’s card of that guy. I’m also including a card back’s worth of information and thoughts about him and his cardboard.
1974 Topps #518
Played 1971 – 1985
1970’s Teams: Astros, Padres, Giants, Dodgers
Baseball Digest named him to their 1972 Rookie All-Star Team; Broke in with the Astros but played just 5 games before being traded to the Padres in a deal for the pitcher Dave Roberts
Appeared most often at 2nd base, but over his career he played every position but pitcher; Was a World Champion with the 1981 Dodgers
1976 Topps #139
Played 1973 – 1986
1970’s Teams: Brewers
Lead the American League with 45 home runs in 1979, a Brewers team record for 28 years; His 123 RBI in 1979 was a career high
Was the Seattle Pilots first round draft pick as a shortstop in 1969; Inducted into the Brewers Walk of Fame and Wall of Honor; Was an All-Star in 1981; Lead the AL with 39 homers in 1982; Hit 268 career home runs while batting just .225; Was in the top in the AL in strikeouts for 6 seasons, leading the AL in 1979 and 1980; Won a pennant with the 1982 Brewers; Won the AL Comeback Player of the Year with the Mariners in 1985 when he had 26 HR and 87 RBI after playing in just 35 games in 1984
Was the last Brewers player to wear #44 before Hank Aaron (you can clearly see this on his 1975 Topps card); During the 1980s he played at the same time – but sadly not in the same league – as a pitcher named Thomas Gorman (OK, fine, he went by Tom, not Thomas)
1974 Topps #18
Played 1972 – 1980
1970’s Teams: Giants, A’s, Yankees, Dodgers
Was a Topps All-Star Rookie in 1973; Won a World Series with the 1978 Yankees
Played for Japan’s Yomiuri Giants in 1981 and 1982 where he was the highest-paid player in Nippon Pro Baseball and earned a notorious reputation for frequently striking out
1976 Topps #111
Played 1970 – 1976
1970’s Teams: Twins, Rangers
Got a small amount of MVP consideration in 1972 when he was the Twins starting shortstop and hit career highs of .276 and 54 runs; Was diagnosed with a form of leukemia in early 1973, played through it for four seasons but died just 10 weeks after his final at bat at the end of the 1976 season; During the 1977 season the Rangers wore a black armband and Thompson’s #4 on their sleeve
Career Highlights: While playing for Oklahoma State in 1968 he was named an All-American and earned a spot on the College World Series All-Tournament Team
1977 Hostess #64
Played 1976 – 1986
1970’s Teams: Tigers
Was an All-Star in 1977 and 1978; Was named as the 1st baseman on Topps’ 1976 All-Star Rookie Team; Hit 31 home runs and 105 RBI in 1977; Homered over the right field roof at Tiger Stadium twice in 1977
Was named to a third All-Star team in 1982; In 1982 he hit 32 homers with 101 RBI
He did not appear on a Major League baseball card until after his rookie season, so his rookie card also has the All-Star Rookie cup logo on it and his 1977 Hostess card (above) is also a rookie card
Oh man… Yomiuri Giants fans must have been frustrated knowing Thomasson was getting paid big bucks to strike out.
>Won a World Series with the 1982 Brewers
As a Cardinal fan, I need to point out that this is not correct
Gary Thomasson also won a Nippon Series with the Giants in 1981. He and Roy White are tied for third players ever to win both a World Series and a Nippon Series (following Johnny Logan and Jim Lefebvre).
The Brewers lost to the Cardinals in the 1982 World Series.