Monday, May 26, 2008

1974 Topps Countdown

The 1974 Topps set was released all at once, not in series like the sets that came before it. This set was loaded with various subsets such as Hank Aaron reprint cards, another traded series managers, league leaders, etc. A team autograph set was released later, but is not part of the numbered set. The photography remained pretty lame, but of course we collected anyway. Here is a sampling of the 1974 Topps set in the form of a top 10 list.

# 10 Ray Fosse
Fosse is probably best remembered for blocking the plate against Pete Rose in the all-star game. He was a solid catcher, and should have had a longer career. Notice his helmet without a bill. You don't see those anymore. The back of this card states that he is a real estate salesman in the off season.

# 9 Walt Williams

Walt "no neck" Williams looks like he would rather be doing something else than posing for this shot.

# 8 (tie) Woodie Fryman

Fryman appears to be set for a Greco-Roman wrestling match. He may be better off without his glove.

#8 (tie) Bill Singer

Singer shows fine form in his delivery follow through. One question though. Why is he still holding the ball?

# 7 Bob Moose

Bob pitched a no hitter against the Mets in 1969. He has not had a hair cut since then.

# 6 Billy Champion

Billy looks like a champion here. His career 17-39 record suggests otherwise.

#5 Marty Pattin
You have to include some of the classic air brush cards in any such list. Why not this one. It looks like Topps hired a 6th grade art student to do the work.

#4 Fernando Gonzalez

The Pirates traded Gonzalez to the Royals. Topps air brushed a blue ring around the collar of his jersey, making him look somewhat like a member of the Royals. Notice some of his former Pirate teammates in the background.

#3 Dick Sharon

Dick checks to make sure that his bat is straight before taking his cuts in the batting cage.

#2 Darold Knowles

Darold shows the opposing batter his grip on the ball, possibly alerting the batter to what pitch he is going to throw. The runner on second base could probably take a bigger lead off the bag, but does not appear to be too interested.

# 1 Dave Kingman

Kingman connects on another of his mammoth home runs. The blurry and out of focus fans in the background is kind of creepy. Notice the fan just to the right of Kingman's left elbow. I think it is a monkey.

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