Thursday, July 20, 2017

A Pair of Clubbing Cubbies

Kind of a funny story here. I wrote a request letter to Ron Cey very early on in this project, but I didn't send it. The reason was that I had Cey's A's card from the 1987 Topps Traded set and I had the Cubs Leaders card featuring him and teammate Steve Trout, but (to my amazement) I couldn't find his regular card amongst my collection.

As I mentioned in a previous post, when we were on vacation, I went to a card show and picked up a complete 1987 Topps set  to fill in the various cards I couldn't track down. So finally, almost two months after I wrote the request letter, I was able able to send it off. In just eight days, an envelope appeared in my mailbox containing the three cards. As you can see in the picture though, only two of them are signed. Turns out (upon closer inspection of the Sports Card Forum Mail Manager) that Cey's normal practice is to just sign two cards, even if more are sent. Turns out I could've just sent the ones I already had a long time ago! Oh well. Next up I guess I'll send the Cubs Leaders card to Trout and we'll just go from there.

A day after getting the mid-1980s Cubs third baseman and six-time all star,  I moved around the diamond to second base and got their ten-time all star, Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg. The 1984 NL MVP, Sandberg is the third Hall of Famer I've gotten through the mail, and (I would argue) the best player yet.

If you're in the Hall of Fame, there are probably a lot of teams you've had success against. That said, Sandberg always seemed to be REALLY tough on the Cardinals. I checked on it and sure enough, he hit more home runs against the Cardinals than any team in baseball. None of those home runs were more memorable (or more infamous for Cardinal fans) than the game-tying home runs he hit off Bruce Sutter in the ninth AND tenth innings one Saturday on the NBC Game of the Week in his MVP season of 1984. A lot happened in the game: Willie McGee hit for the cycle, the game went eleven innings, and the Cubs won 12-11. Despite everything else that happened though, it is simply known as "the Ryne Sandberg game."

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