When I finished this set, I wasn’t expecting this to actually be a finished set at that point. This was one Topps really could have done each series and made a 30 card set.
Info about the set:
Set description: “When their teams needed them most, these 10 position players ventured into unfamiliar territory.” The front has a picture of the position player who was forced into a pitching situation, with a background that prominently features baseball stitches.
Set composition: 10 cards, 1:8 (2016 Topps series 1)
Hall of Famers: 2. Wade Boggs, Stan Musial.
How I put the set together:
- 7 cards from my series 1 HTA jumbo box
- 4 cards from a trade
Card that completed my set: #PIS-5 – Paul O’Neill
I got this as one of 4 cards in trade from 30 dollar habit.
Thoughts on the set: I love the set and my main complaint is that Topps only did it in series 1. C’mon! There are so many other great instances of position players pitching. From Babe Ruth coming back to show he could still pitch, to Mark Grace giving up David Ross’ first homer, to David Ross hitting a homer as a pitcher. Jimmie Foxx, Ted Williams and Adam Dunn all have stories to tell. There are so many great options!
Best card (my opinion): #PIS-3 – Jose Canseco
Canseco is the most fun out of all these guys, though I like the Ichiro story from last year as well.
Best Reds card (my opinion): Paul O’Neill is the only one.
O’Neill came in to pitch in a blowout loss in 1987. Wish they could have found a shot from the actual game.
Here’s the whole set.
Any other tidbits: Musial was the one that seemed to stick out as not belonging. He was a pitcher coming up in the minors, but only had one instance where he was “pressed into service” in the bigs. He pitched to one batter in 1952 and didn’t get an out. I wish Topps had put more about the actual pitching appearance. Musial faced Cubs hitter Frank Baumholtz and threw just one pitch. It was a gimmick because the Cubs and Cardinals were officially out of the pennant chase, but Baumholtz had an extreme outside chance to catch Musial for the batting title. Musial came in from the outfield to face him in the first inning. Baumholtz grounded to third, reached on an error, and ended his batting title prayer. Musial has the strange stat line of facing one hitter, not giving up a walk, hit or HBP, but not also having no credit for any portion of an inning. He has to be tied for the least innings pitched of any pitcher in MLB history!