Saturday, September 22, 2012

Zero-Year Cards, Pt. 39

2005 Topps Total #433 Pokey Reese (Mariners)

They're back.

The "zero-year" cards are still alive and kicking on this blog.

Even though my last "zero-year" post was over two months ago, I haven't retired the theme completely.

Pokey Reese was the main reason I decided to resurrect the "zero-year" theme, at least for tonight.

After all, he's a prominent member of this "club". This is one of three cards I own that feature Reese in a Mariners uniform.

Sadly, Reese would never get another shot in the bigs after missing the entire 2005 season with an elbow injury. His major-league career ended after the 96 games he played with the world-champion '04 Red Sox.

At least he got to go out on top.

One of the reasons I've become a huge fan of Reese is because of his nickname. I'm sure I'm not the only one.


How could you not love a nickname like that?

Up until about a year ago, I had no idea what his given name was.

Calvin Reese.

Who knew?

For a while, the only cards of Reese that I collected were the ones that listed him as "Calvin". Recently, I decided to just start a full-on player collection of his, although I still hold of the "Calvin Reese" ones in higher regard.

Still, I can't help but be fascinated whenever I see the word "Pokey" on some of my baseball cards. It's one of the goofiest, yet greatest, nicknames in the game's history.

Sadly, it seems like simple-yet-creative nicknames like "Pokey" are a thing of the past. Most of the ones today are too simple. I can't get into ones like "A-Rod". Or "K-Rod". Or "Joey Bats".

It wasn't always that way, though.

Back in the day, baseball was swarmed with great nicknames.

Just look at guys like "Yogi" Berra, "Duke" Snider, "Whitey" Ford for proof.

In fact, they became better known by their nicknames. Nobody knew them as Lawrence Berra, Edwin Snider, or Edward Ford.

That sort of thing isn't found too much nowadays. With Larry "Chipper" Jones retiring, the only guy left is Gerald "Buster" Posey, at least off the top of my head.

Will baseball ever see a resurgence in the nickname department? Only time will tell.

Until then, we'll just have to appreciate the great nicknames the past has given us.

Like Pokey Reese.

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