Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Awesome players hanging out together

Last week, I discovered one of the greatest websites in the history of the internet.

A quick warning before I link it to this post:

Even though it is massively addicting, I am not responsible for time wasted while browsing through this particular site.

Understood? Okay, prepare yourself for..."Awesome People Hanging Out Together".

I think the title pretty much speaks for itself.

As I was browsing through the site for what seemed like hours on end, I thought of how I'd love to see a baseball version of something like that one of these days.

Then I remembered that we already have baseball cards for that.

Given how bad some of the recent "combo" issues have been, can you blame me for letting it slip my mind?

If the above Hamilton/Drew is any indication, most recent ones consist of two seemingly random players standing next to each other in awkward positions. Evidently, having your back to the camera is perfectly acceptable to the folks in charge at Topps.

Although these types of "awesome" cards have pretty much fallen by the wayside in recent days, a few gems have still managed to slip through the cracks.

2010 Topps was the "death rattle" for these.

While most of the "combos" Topps featured consisted of more recent ballplayers, a few of them gave the collector a vintage flashback into the "awesome players hanging out together" realm of things.

Even though they rarely spoke to each other during their careers, a photographer managed to snap this tremendous shot of two of the greatest players the game has ever seen.

This is the type of photo that should be framed and displayed in a museum.

Still, I like how it looks on a little old 2 1/2 by 3 1/2 inch piece of cardboard.

It's certainly a "museum piece" in my collection.

As far as I'm concerned, other companies have easily topped Topps when it comes to "awesome players hanging out together".

How often do you get to see a shot of Ken Griffey Jr. and Willie McCovey, two of the greatest sluggers the game has ever seen?

This card has been in my collection ever since I originally pulled it from a pack way back in 2006, and I can tell you one thing. 

It's never leaving. 


Fleer managed to capture some especially "awesome" moments during their early days.

Both Willie Stargell and Pete Rose were nearing the twilights of their respective careers by the time 1983 rolled around. 

Since "Pops" played his last big league game in '82, this one is also a great piece for my "Into the Sunset" theme, a proper send-off to one of the game's greatest players.

Rose hung around for a few more years, going on to break Ty Cobb's all-time hits record and becoming probably the last player-manager in baseball history.

Especially awesome is the fact that these two have well over 6,000 total hits combined.

That's a lot of greatness packed into one simple baseball card.

I'm sure there's a lot of other great shots of "awesome players hanging out together" still floating around out there.

I know for a fact that I had to leave a lot of fantastic ones out of this post. (Perhaps there's a "Part 2" in the works.)

However, for my money, it doesn't get much better than this.

Willie Mays, Mickey Mantle, and Hank Aaron. A trio of Hall of Famers. A total of 1,951 career home runs combined.

All on one baseball card.

To think that this card only cost me a quarter is a bit staggering.

I think it's safe to say that this is the most awesome of cards in the "awesome players hanging out together" category.

If there's a better one, I'd like to see it.


gcrl said...

I had no idea that griffey/stretch card existed. Very cool. Mccovey and stargell are easily in my top 5 of guys who I saw play that hit the ball the hardest. If that makes sense.

arpsmith said...

I love that Griffey and McCovey card and actually have it as part of my McCovey collection.

I am also a big fan of the Rose and Stargell card, two of my favorite to watch as a young kid.