Tuesday, September 10, 2019

jim rice is in my hall of famer collection

i first saw jim rice on the 1978 topps home run league leader card, and then followed his exploits in the box scores during the 1978 season. he wound up as the american league mvp that year, missing out on the triple crown by 13 hits.  the craziest part of his season, i thought, was that he led the league not only in home runs, but also in triples! after that monster season, he kind of moved in to the background as far as i was concerned; believe it or not, there was a time when boston sports teams did not monopolize the national media. i was a more closely following the angels in 1979 as they headed towards their first postseason berth, and so lost track of rice a bit.  his name popped up on the home run leader board again in 1983, but i never did add him to the list of players that i collected. still, he was a big part of the first full season of my baseball fandom.

it wasn't a huge surprise that he found his way to cooperstown in 2009, getting the call to the hall in his 15th and final year of bbwaa availability with just over the requisite 75% of the vote. here's the jim rice card that is in my hall of famer collection - it's from 2005 upper deck past time pennants:

and here's the back:
i did see rice play in person once. it wasn't until 1989, his final season in the big leagues. some buddies and i went to the big a in anaheim to catch a game featuring roger clemens and an angel rookie named jim abbott. the angels got to clemens early, and abbott wound up pitching his first career shutout that night. along the way, i saw jim rice hit in to two double plays and go 0 for 3.  it's not that i'm down on jim rice, i just figured that he would get the same lack of hall of fame support as his contemporaries such as dave parker and dale murphy.  maybe someday i'll be able to add those two guys to my hall of famer collection, too.

here's my hall of famer collection as its been documented so far:

babe ruth - 2003 topps tribute world series edition world series tribute relic 351/425

bob feller - 2001 topps archives

jackie robinson - 2004 topps clubhouse collection clubhouse relics

roberto clemente - 2005 donruss greats hall of fame souvenirs relic

warren spahn - 1999 upper deck century legends epic signatures

mickey mantle - 2000 upper deck legends legendary game jerseys relic

willie mays - 1997 topps willie mays reprints autograph

duke snider - 2003 upper deck sp authentic chirography hall of famers 144/250

hank aaron - 2004 topps originals 1979 topps all-time record holders rbi 03/32

harmon killebrew - 2000 upper deck legends legendary signatures

bruce sutter - 2003 topps all-time fan favorites

jim rice - 2005 upper deck past time pennants

pete rose* - 2018 panini flawless legendary signatures 15/25
you can find the full list of hall of famers (and some not - yet) that i aim to include in this collection at my want list site.

*not currently a member of the hall of fame


  1. Love the data you dig up for these posts. I wonder how many other MLB players have led the league in both home runs and triples. Heck... I didn't even realize that Rice was had that kind of speed.

    1. it is somewhat crazy what I remember from my early days of fandom. then again, some of what I thought I remembered has turned out to be incorrect!

  2. Nice blue sharpie auto, but it's topped by that mustache and sideburns combo!
    Part of me feels Parker and Murphy should be in the HOF, too. I guess the problem is where does one draw the line between very good and Hall worthy.

    1. I would be happy with Steve Garvey being just above that line, wherever it is!