Anyways, this is a trade post, and the title is a hint about who they are from. See if you can figure it out (I know, this sounds about as exiting as a puzzle on the back of a cereal box; you get what you pay for, I guess).
I'm going to go ahead and break out of another rut - the saving the best card for the end. I'm having the dessert first! I had commented on a post by this blogger that I had always wanted one of the 1974 "Washington Nat'l Lea." cards. Back then, it looked like a sure thing that the Padres would be moved from San Diego to our nation's capital, and Topps wanted to get a head start.
To be honest, I'm not a big fan of this set. Not the best looking in my opinion, everything seems kinda dull. However, I love this card! So cool to have it. I don't want to sound over-dramatic, but how different would my life have been if the Padres had moved to DC? Would I still be a big baseball fan? Would I be a... (gulp)... Dodger fan? Phew... glad I dodged that bullet.
Next up, some late 90s Friars! Got a bunch of these, and they are my first from the 1998 Topps set, the year the Padres won the NL Pennant. Great shot of Finley at the plate, but the nod for "best card of the set" goes to Joey in the blue Swinging Friar jersey with the socks pulled up high, right where they should be. Dude could grow a goatee pretty well, too. Even though I'm not a big fan of the gold border, I will say that the backs of these cards have some of the more interesting facts that I've come across in a while. Some of those will probably warrant a post down the road.
This "Gold Futures" card helps get me closer to all the Padres inserts for this year's Topps set. Luebke getting injured this year was a big disappointment, hoping for a rebound year in 2013. "Everybody Loves Khalil" is the name of a sitcom I'm planning on writing about a quiet, moody shortstop with hair like a middle school girl who is loved by all even though he never talks to anybody. Based on a true story.
Ok, so you still haven't figured out who the generous trade partner is yet? He definitely would appreciate this card of an airborne Fernandez avoiding a... sliding Barry Bonds? Not sure if that's Willie May's godson or one of his Pittsburgh teammates. Hard to recognize the dude in pictures before he doubled in size.
Last but not least, the lone "non-Padre" card in the package (unless you count the "Washington" card as a non-Padre, which would be ridiculous). What I find really interesting about most Mlicki cards is... nothing. What I find interesting about this one is who's lurking in the background.
I usually only joke about doing research to find out when the picture for a particular baseball card was taken. However, on this one, I decided to do a little digging. The picture was definitely taken in 1997, as evidenced by the "Jackie Robinson 50th Anniversary" patch on all of the jerseys that season. Mlicki faced the Padres three times in the 1997 season, but two of those games were at night. Therefore, this had to be taken on the May 1st game, which was played in New York. The Padres won that game 7-3, with Padres starter Andy Ashby getting the complete game victory.
Tony Gwynn, the man with the imposing physique in the background, went 3 for 4 that game, with an RBI on a sacrifice fly in the 3rd, which scored Friar second baseman Quilvio Veras from third. Even though Tony collected three hits, he only made it to second base once, on a first inning double. His other two hits were singles, and he got erased off the paths via force out (7th inning) and double play (9th inning).
So, long story boring, this picture was taken in the first inning of the game against my Padres on May 1st, 1997, while Dave Mlicki was pitching to either Ken Caminiti or Greg Vaughn (who both flied out). Thanks baseball-reference!
Did you figure it out? These cards are from Jim, the man behind the blog Garvey Cey Russell Lopes. I love how Jim included a few "turning two" cards and even a "lurker" card, both staples for posts on his far superior blog.
Thanks again for the cardboard, Jim! I'll be highlighting one more card from this trade in a post for tomorrow.
I know, so suspenseful, right?