Friday, September 24, 2010

Play at the...Wall?

What? Do you think I'm only interested in play at the plate cards? I'm not that one-dimensional, despite appearances.

When it comes to vintage goodness, I love the play at the plate cards in the 1956 set, but there are some other great cards in that set.

This is the latest 1956 card I acquired via trade on the Topps Transmogrifier site.

It's a great Jim Rivera card. I'm not sure how high that wall was, but it looks like Rivera is about 10 feet off the ground. According to Wiki, "Rivera was a sparkplug for the White Sox. A smart and fast runner, he ran the bases with abandon, sliding into bases on his belly before it was fashionable, and made many a game-saving catch in the right field. A ground ball hitter, he used his speed to full advantage and was a much tougher in clutch situations." I guess that would be one of those game-saving catches on the card.

Initially, I was confused about why the front of the card said his name was Jim, when the back lists it as Manuel Joseph Rivera. I would have expected the name Joe before Jim. Then I saw his nickname was "Jungle Jim". Apparently a sports writer gave him that nickname because of his head first approach on the bases. I don't really get it, but that's just me. I do like the cartoon on the back that shows him balancing on top of the fence. It goes nicely with the photo on the front.

Jim Rivera played 10 seasons, most of which came with the White Sox. He had 911 hits, 83 homers and 422 RBIs while hitting .256. He had 160 career steals, leading the A.L. with 25 in 1955. He was the runner-up in that category in 6 other seasons.

1 comment:

  1. I got that card recently ... because I saw it on the internets.