Since Weigh-in #71 I’ve been sharing cards from the year that matches the weigh-in number… 1971s for Weigh-In #71, 1972s for Weigh-In 1972, etc. This time around I am featuring cards for a goofy idea I had that centers around my Statis Pro tabletop baseball game.
One of the seasons I have Statis Pro player cards for is 1973, and one of the ways I’ve been distracting myself over the past two years is to come up with different ways of ‘drafting’ teams using my Statis Pro seasons. Some ideas get implemented, but many of the ideas are stupid and I know they’re stupid (i.e. a team of Richards – Richard, Rich, Richie, Rick, Ricky and Dick) but I think them up anyway.
The latest stupid idea was to select a team of players who have a card in 1973 Topps that was airbrushed. Just to make this clear, this would be the best lineup I can make out of the players who got airbrushed, not the best/worst airbrushing jobs. This is something of a rarity… a stupid Statis Pro idea that may become something of a reality, even if it’s just a few games.
In this post, mixed among the weigh-in stuff, I’m going to feature my starting lineup… Starting with pitcher Andy Messersmith, who went 14-10 with a 2.70 ERA in 1973:
Messersmith was part of the blockbuster November 1972 seven-player trade between the Dodgers and Angels, a trade which also sent Frank Robinson from the Dodgers to the Angels. Another player in this deal who made Team Airbrush was Angels’ starting pitcher Bill Singer.
I’ll scatter the rest of the “Team Airbrush” starting lineup throughout this post, but before I wander too far from the Weigh-In aspect…
For those wondering what the deal is with a “Weigh-In”, here is my official Mission Statement: Posting updates on the organizing and streamlining of my collection gives me a look at the big picture, keeps me honest and helps with motivation and/or guilt.
Changes since the last weigh-in (from 10/1/2021 to 1/12/2022):
Net change in the collection: +116 (200 added, 84 removed)
Net change to the # of cards in the house: -971 (407 came in, 1,378 went out)
The cards coming in came from COMC and from a few blasters which showed up at my local Target. The cards going out were largely cards given away at Halloween and mailed out to other collectors.
Catcher Earl Williams, a Rookie of the Year two years earlier, was part of a six-player November 1972 trade between the Braves and Orioles.
Totals since I started tracking on 10/16/2011:
Total # of cards purged from the collection, to date: 15,771
Net change to the collection, to date: +6,455
Total # of cards which have left the house, to date: 54,612
Net change to the number of cards in the house, to date: -13,587
I’m hoping to make more progress on reducing the number of cards in my collection in 2022. After spending much of 2021 trying to organize things, I’ve given more cards and sets the side-eye, wondering “Why do I have that? Would I ever miss that if it were gone?”
1st Baseman Hal Breeden was acquired from the Reds at the beginning of the 1972 season, but I guess Topps didn’t get any photos of him between April and September.
Size of the collection:
Number of individual cards tracked in my Access database: 72,057
Number of cards that make up the sets flagged as completed in my Access database: 11,591
…which means I’ve got at least 83,648 cards in my collection
2nd Baseman Davey Johnson was an All-Star in 1973 and came to Atlanta in the same deal that sent Earl Williams to Baltimore
Money spent on cards:
This does not count money spent on show admission, shipping, supplies, etc.
This quarter: $112.26
As you can see, my average spending per month in 2021 was less than half of what it was in the previous three years… Will that change in 2022? Time will tell.
Average per month for 2021: $35.64
Average per month for 2020: $76.66
Average per month for 2019: $80.38
Average per month for 2018: $79.03
Average per month for 2017: $43.63
Average per month for 2016: $36.11
I didn’t track my spending before 2016. In 2016 and 2017 I didn’t go to as many card shows because there weren’t any local shows, and I made the 5 hour round trip to a regional card show only once or twice a year.
Shortstop Eddie Leon was traded from Cleveland to the White Sox for Walt “No Neck” Williams. Shortstop was the weakest position of the bunch and if I included airbrushed rookies, I might’ve gone with Mario Guerrero who appears on a “1973 ROOKIE SHORTSTOPS” card with two other guys
Size of my MS Access card database:
I track my collection in a Microsoft Access database of my own creation. There’s quite a bit of work involved in keeping it up-to-date, so I like to satisfy my own curiosity by finding out how much information is currently in my database.
My database currently contains 1,007 set definitions (up 3 from the last weigh-in) and
249,786 card definitions (up 615 from the last weigh-in).
It’s important to point out that this is merely the number of sets and cards which are represented within my database; for example, although I have no cards from 1949 Bowman, that set represents 1 set definition and 240 card definitions.
3rd Baseman Graig Nettles was part of a 6-player November 1972 trade between the Indians and Yankees that, long term, didn’t work out so well for Cleveland
Left Fielder Frank Robinson is a bit of a cheat because he was a DH for most of 1973. He came to the Angels in the trade that also involved Andy Messersmith.
Center Fielder Bill North was traded by the Cubs – you can see a little bit of “CHICAGO” at the bottom of the photo – to the A’s for pitcher Bob Locker (who’s a reliever on Team Airbrush)
Right Fielder Oscar Gamble came to the Indians in a four player deal with the Phillies. His inclusion is also a cheat because he was more of a DH than an outfielder, but my game, my rules.
A couple of more comments about “Team Airbrush”…
In the original search for players I included guys without caps and “Guys looking up” who may or may not have been airbrushed… For example I don’t think Félix Millan was airbrushed in this photo; The Braves wore pinstripes up to 1971 and I believe they wore their 1971 jerseys and pants in 1972 spring training as well.
I ultimately left out anybody from the “Looking Up” and “Capless” camps. The most notable players excluded from “Looking Up” are Larry Hisle – who I could include if I decided that guys who were mainly the DH should not play the outfield – and Millan.
There were fewer capless photos than I would have expected… I came up with just Danny Cater and Joe Decker, and neither one had a 1973 season good enough to make my team.
One other thing that was moderately interesting: There were more than a couple of guys who appeared airbrushed in 1973 Topps and did not play in 1973 (or, in some cases, ever again). Denny McLain is the biggest name of the bunch. The Braves gave up on him in 1973 spring training and his career would be over. The only other example I can remember off the top of my head is José Arcia, who was a regular with the Padres in 1969 and 1970, but would remain in the minors from 1971 to 1976.