One Man's Thoughts on Sports Card Collecting

Friday, July 29, 2011

A One of a Kind Topps Card

I love unique cards that come with an interesting story, and the latest addition to my collection fits that bill.  Spot anything unusual about this card?:

This is the 1975 Topps Herb Washington, and it is the only Topps card to ever feature "Pinch Runner" as the player's position.

Herb had a strange and brief career in baseball in the mid-70s.  Oakland A's owner Charlie Finley, best known for his legendary stinginess when it came to player salaries, became enamored with Washington's world-class sprinter speed.  In fact, he was so impressed that he decided to sign Herb to be the team's designated runner, despite the fact that he hadn't played baseball since high school.

In 1974 he appeared in 92 games, all as a Pinch Runner.  His Topps card claims that he was "personally responsible" for 9 A's wins in 1974, a stat that sounds dubious at best seeing as how he only managed to score 29 runs while stealing 29 bases in 45 attempts.

In his 105-game career (he only lasted about a month into the 1975 season), Washington never once went to the plate or played the field.  He stole a grand total of 31 bases in 48 attempts and scored 33 runs.  But he also got a World Series ring, as the A's won it all in 1974.  I'd take that career in a heartbeat!

Previous  Trivia Question:

The Common Card Man wishes Derek Jeter belated congratulations on his 3000th hit. He was the second man to hit a home run for his 3000th (Wade Boggs is the other). Who is the only player to hit a triple for his 3000th hit?
A: Former Brewer great Paul Molitor is the only person to smack a triple for his milestone hit.
Today's Trivia Question:
Pretty much any baseball fan can tell you that the Yankees have the most World Series titles (27).  What team has the second-most?


  1. The Giants and the Dodgers have got to be up there, too, but I'd have to guess the Cardinals.