My New “Oldest Doubles” And Other 1956 Topps

Up until recently, the oldest “doubles” I’d ever had were a pair of 1963 Topps Marv Throneberry cards, one of those deals where I bought a card at a show and then got home and found out that I already had it.

One thing about buying from COMC is that it makes screwing up so much more efficient… I got both of these cards in the same COMC order…
1956 Topps Eddie Yost in duplicate
…and didn’t realize it until after the cards had shipped. Completely my fault, nothing to do with COMC, please continue to buy cards from that fine website (especially my cards).

The majority of the 1956 cards I got were all of the same category: “affordable commons that I bought solely because of the visual appeal — usually the action shot”.

This Roy Sievers card was one I saw on someone else’s blog and said “Oooh, gotta get me one!”
…I wish I could remember whose blog it was…
1956 Topps Roy Sievers
Roy Sievers was the 1949 AL Rookie Of the Year, was an all-star four times, lead the AL with 42 homers and 114 RBI in 1957 and his nickname was “Squirrel”.

Ruben Gomez was one of the first Puerto Ricans in the Majors.
1956 Topps Ruben Gomez
I love the fact that this pitcher’s action shot shows him legging it out to first.  It’s not entirely uncalled for… He batted .300 in 1955 (18 for 60).

Sammy White was the Red Sox starting catcher for most of the 1950’s, and was an All-Star in 1953.
1956 Topps Sammy White
White scored three times in one inning in a game against the Tigers on 6/18/53. He had two singles and a walk in the bottom of the 7th, as the Sox scored 17 runs off three Tigers pitchers.

Wayne Terwilliger played 9 years in the Majors with the Cubs, Dodgers, Senators, Giants and A’s…
1956 Topps Wayne Terwilliger
…but what’s really interesting about him is a career in baseball that spans seven decades. He started in the minors in 1948, and between playing, managing and coaching he spent 62 years in professional baseball, finishing as a first base coach for the independent minor league Ft. Worth Cats in 2010.

An interesting sign of how much I’ve come to enjoy the 1956 set is the fact that I’ve got nearly as many cards from 1956 as from the rest of the 1950’s – Topps, Bowman and Red Man – combined.  There’s a very good chance that 1956 will take the lead with the next show I attend.

I Do Not Know What A “Rheum” Is

I am so far behind in sharing my new acquisitions…

HOW FAR BEHIND ARE YOU?

…I’m so far behind that I’ve almost caught up to myself. Every time I go to a show or order off COMC I scan all the vintage cards and some of the more interesting post-vintage things, but for the most part the scans just build up because I never get around to writing about them.

This post is the first attempt to catch up, and all three cards are of Don Zimmer in his post-Dodger playing days.

Don Zimmer got around a bit in the early 1960’s. Shortly before the start of the 1960 season, the Dodgers traded Zimmer to the Cubs for a package of players and cash. He stayed with the Cubs for two seasons before being drafted by the Mets in the October, 1961 expansion draft.

There techically aren’t any Mets in the 1962 Post set – I guess because they used photos from 1961 and didn’t do any airbrushing – but if you look at the last line of text on this card, you can see there are cards which reference the fact that the featured player was drafted by the Mets.

1962 Post Don Zimmer
The Gil Hodges card (which I don’t have) has a similar line on it.

One of the Mets’ objectives in putting together that first team was to obtain players who would be familiar to the New York baseball fan, and Zimmer certainly fell into that category. Despite that, he only played 14 games for the Mets before he was (mercifully?) traded to the Reds.

Zimmer finished 1962 in Cincinnati, but during the following winter was traded to the Dodgers for a minor leaguer.

Anyone care to guess whether these are Cubs pinstripes or Mets pinstripes on this Dodgers card?
1963 Topps Don Zimmer

His second stint in LA was short, because he was sold to the Senators that June. He’d finish out his major league career with 2.5 seasons in D.C., after which he played one very unspectacular season in Japan.

1964 Topps Don Zimmer

…and if you’re wondering what the subject line has to do with any of this…

…”Zimmer” is the German word for “room”… or “rheum”, if you prefer.

Eddie Yost, The Walking Man

Former major leaguer Eddie Yost passed away this past Tuesday; his nickname, ‘The Walking Man’ came from his ability to draw a large number of walks. Over 18 seasons, Eddie lead the AL in walks six times, had 100+ walks eight times, was in the top 10 in walks 10 different times and twice lead the AL in on-base percentage. What makes this really impressive is the fact that nobody was pitching around Eddie like they would pitch around Ted Williams or Babe Ruth, he just had that good of an eye.

Eddie Yost was a Mets coach when I first started following baseball, and the more I learned about him, the more I came to appreciate him. He was 17 years old when he made his Major League debut during WWII with the Senators.  He never played a day in the minors, but did spend some time in military service.  He was the Senators’ starting third baseman from 1947 until he was traded to Detroit after the 1958 season.

At the time of his retirement, Yost was fourth on the all-time walk list behind Babe Ruth, Williams and Mel Ott, all power hitters who nobody wanted to pitch to.   He now ranks 11th on the all-time list, behind Barry Bonds, Rickey Henderson, Ruth, Williams, Joe Morgan, Carl Yastrzemski, Jim Thome , Mickey Mantle, Ott and Frank “The Big Hurt” Thomas. Among the players with fe wer career walks are Stan Musial, Pete Rose, Harmon Killebrew, Chipper Jones, Lou Gehrig, Mike Schmidt, and Willie Mays.

He wasn’t completely about the walks; he was an All-Star in 1952, he lead the AL in doubles in 1951, runs in 1959 (his first year with the Tigers).  He was also a fine defensive third baseman;  eight different seasons he lead the AL in putouts by a 3B, and twice in assists by a 3B.

About the 1952 Red Man card pictured above:
I love Red Man cards, but this is the only one I own.  The main reason I don’t own more is because there aren’t many players I collect who appeared on a Red Man card… although I’m thinking that I should do with Red Man what I started doing with 1956 Topps, which is buying affordable commons that visually appeal to me, regardless of who’s pictured on it.