“Lost Cards”: The Year After, 2012

18 03 2014

2012

2012 Topps Manny

Best Player to retire in 2011.   Manny Ramirez.

Did he have a 2012 card?   Yes, 2012 Topps and mini

Ramirez retired after 5 games with the Rays in 2011 after he had tested positive for PEDs for 2nd time and faced a 100-game suspension.  This one comes with a bit of an asterisk – Ramirez has played minor league baseball at the triple-A level each of the past two seasons for the A’s and Rangers affiliates, as well as a productive stint in the Chinese professional league.  He recently insisted that he isn’t retired yet.

The fact that Manny hadn’t officially retired but didn’t make the majors is what gets him on this list.  It’s also what helped him to have a Topps card – since he played for the A’s in spring training while trying to make the Major League club, he’s shown with a card in their uniform.  Not that Topps used a real A’s photo of Manny – that’s a photo-shopped Dodger card up there!

Apologies to:   As mentioned, this one comes with something of an asterisk, since Manny isn’t retired and has in fact played in minor league and foreign professional baseball.  Assuming Manny never gets back on the MLB diamond, apologies would go to…

Ivan Rodriguez.  Rodriguez retired after a few years with the Nationals when he couldn’t catch on with a team in 2012.  He didn’t have a 2012 base card.  

Vladimir Guerrero also retired when he couldn’t get a contract for the 2012 season.  Topps gave him a record breaker checklist card in the base set, but not a regular card.  He did have a card in 2012 Heritage with his full stat line.

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4 responses

18 03 2014
JT

Due to my stance on the PEDs issue, I would call Vladdy the best player to retire in 2011. Ramirez has the failed tests, and Pudge was fingered by Canseco.

19 03 2014
chuckneo

I hear you. My stance is different – I pretty much ignore PEDs. Of anyone, Manny and A-Rod are actually the guys I probably most hold it against. I always felt like Bonds, McGwire, etc. were doing it at a time when the entire institution embraced steroids. In a way – that makes it not cheating. But Manny and A-Rod got caught so much later – at a time when many of their peers were championing against PEDs.

Regardless, I still go by how good they were and hobby impact for this – and Manny definitely outdistances Vlad or Pudge in that case!

19 03 2014
JT

I hold Bud Selig responsible for all of it. McGwire, Bonds, and the lot were just the pawns in his evil regime. Between Selig and the MLBPA, there was no way testing would take place, though there were “rules” in place that prohibited illegally obtained steroids. There was no way for baseball to enforce those “rules” (if they even wanted to, which they didn’t as long as the money flowed) because of the players union. But they were there.

I go back and forth on how rigid to be in terms of the Hall of Fame. Of course, I don’t have a vote so in the end it doesn’t really matter, but I haven’t yet bent on any of the guys on the ballot that have been proven guilty or have an abundance of evidence against them (Sosa, Clemens, etc.). Those who are merely accused or assumed without any shred of evidence (Bagwell, Piazza), I believe they should be in.

20 03 2014
chuckneo

Yeah – I always looked at it differently. I kind of look at Bonds and Clemens as not breaking the rules, but A-Rod and Manny as having done so.

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