The following are some cards that came my way from everybody's favorite Ken Griffey Jr. fan, TJ from The Junior Junkie blog. The dude has copious amounts of cardboard that happen to not be of Junior, so he's trying to clear them out and replace them with more Juniors. This particular batch of Friars came unsolicited, but I'll be shipping some stuff out to the bayou soon enough as a thank you.
Leafing through the contents of the package, I wondered what would've happened if these had arrived on the doorstep of any other card bloggers. What would they keep, what would they toss? Assuming that they're not a Padre fans, would any make it into the binders?
Well, fortunately, they didn't get sent to any random blogger, they got sent to me. And here are a few that I liked enough to take pictures of.
I have more cards of Mark Parent catching than any other Friar backstop, with the exception of Benito Santiago. Pretty impressive for a guy who only played an average of 35.6 games per year in his five year stint in San Diego. Still, they all look great, and are always appreciated.
These are two sharp looking Gwynns. I'm normally not a huge fan of a lot of the 90s "super shiny" cards, but that Bowman's Best looks awesome. Leaf managed to make the most horribly boring set of the year in 1992, and then create an awesome parallel set, switching out the dull gray for the midnight black. Good choice, fellas.
Speaking of Leaf... A while back, I posted two cards that I didn't have from the 1991 version of that set, and today I have two more from the previous year that will fill some voids in my binders. I remember not really being a fan of Leaf as a kid, but I like these ones enough now.
Just when I thought I had every card of Steve Finley laying down a bunt, The Junior Junkie goes and surprises me with this gem from 1994 Stadium Club. To top it all off, he goes and makes me create an exception to my "no Finley cards from his post-Padre days". Though it hurts me to see him in the uniform of any other NL West team, this shot of him in a Giants uniform tracking down a long fly ball is too good to discard.
If you couldn't tell, the majority of the cards sent my way were all from the "overproduction era" of baseball cards. I felt like I already had all of the Padre cards from 1989 Upper Deck worth having. I was wrong. Not one, but two pitchers swinging the bats? Gotta have those. I actually seem to recall having a few others of Ed Whitson at the plate... I'll havta dig those up sometime. Randy Ready isn't a pitcher, but he's Ready to take some BP, by the looks of this one.
If you haven't seen it yet, Tim from the Toddfather blog is having a countdown of his top five favorite sets from the 90s. At number five, he put 1995 Score. I don't know that I would have the Score name in any of my top five from the 90s countdown, but 1992 Score is probably my favorite. Like most things that I like, I like it not so much because I think it's the "best", but because I'm attached to it; '92 was the year that I got really into collecting baseball cards, and I must've opened a bunch of those packs. Love the Padres logo in the background at good old Jack Murphy Stadium.
Looking back at the history the Padres have of having top-tier closing pitchers (Rollie Fingers, Goose Gossage, Trevor Hoffman, Heath Bell, Huston Street, etc.), it seems easy to overlook Mark Davis, who was an All-Star and won the Cy Young in 1989, his last year with the Padres. He led the league in saves with 44, and in the offseason, signed with the Royals, never to find the same magic again.
Oh! Just when I thought I was done finding Padres pitchers at the plate in this package, I find a Rasmussen ready to rip on the reverse side of a card.
Thanks JJ! I have a brick of Griffey's with your name on it (and address), I just gotta get out of work early enough to take it to the Post Office.