A blog about baseball cards... and the Padres

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

GWYNNsanity!

I wonder if Jeremy Lin holds the patent for words that are combined into clever puns for "insanity"?  Probably not, although I'll let you know if I get a cease and desist from anybody with the Knicks.

For today's GWYNNsday, this is a card from the 1989 Donruss set.  I know that they put MVP on a lot of cards, probably from each team, but was he really the best player on the '89 team?

Yes.

He batted 41 points higher than his next closest teammate, Roberto Alomar, and had 40 stolen bases (!), good for second behind Alomar's 42.  He also led the team in triples with 7!  I guess since I remember Tony in his later years, I can't imagine him with that kind of speed.  But he did play basketball in college, so he was able to put the pedal to the metal when he needed to.

The closest that Tony ever got to actually winning the National League MVP was in 1984, where he finished third in the voting.  He only received one first place vote, narrowly finishing behind the Mets' Keith Hernandez.  Ryne Sandberg, who was beat by the Padres in the NLCS, dominated the voting, securing 22 first place votes, getting on 98% of the ballots (compared to Tony's 55%).

In 1989, he won the Silver Slugger, a Gold Glove, and was elected to the All-Star game.  Despite leading the league in batting average and hits, he finished 8th in the MVP voting, losing out to Kevin Mitchell of the Giants, with Will Clark (also of the Giants) finishing second.

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