Saturday, June 15, 2024

stick a toothpick in him, he's done (but hopefully not really done)

it was a surprise to learn that dusty baker was given a card, especially a solo card, in 2024 topps heritage, but i right away decided to track one down for my post-dodger baker pc. 
toothpick and oversized sweatbands and all.

baker was, of course, included in the original 1975 set, although he was a player and a brave back then. here's a comparison of the backs - heritage on the left, original '75 card on the right
the '75 card back is easier to read, but i certainly appreciate the full manager career stats on the back given that dusty retired from the field at the end of last year. as such, i believe that this is the first manager final tribute i've added to my collection, and now i am realizing that gil hodges' 1972 card should be there as well. joe torre's 1978 topps card showing him as a manager is in that collection, but it's because it shows his full playing days stats on the back, something that hodges' 1964 topps manager card does not.

of course, i already have playing days dusty covered in the final tribute collection thanks to his 1987 cards. at any rate, i tracked down an extra card for the final tribute collection, along with the mini parallel for the pc
here are those backs, compared
the mini is slightly easier to read thanks to the lighter tint of the stock. by the way topps, baker doens't live in riverside anymore.

the mini and this white border parallel
only show up in the pc. i don't plan to chase any of the other parallels, which i think may be limited to black borders.

it's fitting that i'm showing baker on the '75 design, as today is his 75th birthday! he could be enjoying a well deserved retirement, but instead he has signed on to be a special advisor for the giants as they are close to his bay area home. there's probably not going to be a card for him in that capacity, however.

speaking of final tributes, i also added miguel cabrera's 2024 topps big league card
to that particular collection. unlike the flagship card, big league only gives five years of stats
but the total line is still there so i'll allow it.

we have also been blessed with a zack greinke card in topps' series 2 release. 
i wasn't sure it was going to happen since he hasn't signed anywhere for this season, although i suppose there is still a chance based on a couple of reports a month or so ago. for now, i'll treat this as his final tribute card even as i hope he pops up and makes a run to 3,000 strikeouts.

happy birthday johnnie b!


  1. I don't understand why Dusty Baker got a card in 2024 Heritage, but I do really like it. Baseball needs more toothpick-chewing managers.

  2. I'm not sure, but I think Topps uses "home" to mean "town where he grew up" rather than "where he currently lives". Although even that can be hard to pin down as plenty of us move around in childhood.

  3. Manager sunset cards? I like it. Topps hooked Dusty up with a great photo.