As part of a recent LCS haul, the owner had a small album of 1968 and 1969 Topps cards and I was able to grab the four cards above towards my 1968 set I am building. All four in turned help me complete three pages! Lets take a closer look …
1968 Topps #208-216
Card that completed the page: Long-time Dodger, Willie Davis (208)
Favorite card: Dave Morehead (212), just a classic spring training pose in Winter Haven. His best career moment came in 1965, throwing a no-hitter against the Cleveland Indians. After the ’68, he would be drafted by the expansion Kansas City Royals.
Best photograph: Toss up between Willie Davis sporting a classic pose at Shea or Morehead.
Best career: Jim Bunning (215). Hall of Famer, author of two no-hitters, seven All-Star selections, and oh yah … United States Congressman
Number of Red Sox: One; Dave Morehead.
Past/Future Red Sox: One; Gary Peters (210) was traded to the Sox in December of ’69 for a couple of warm bodies. He would pitch for the Sox through the 1972 season compiling a 33-25 record and an earn run average of 4.23.
Interesting fact: In 1976, Bunning tried to become a part-owner of the Houston Astros.
1968 Topps #298-306
Card that completed the page: Rusty Staub (300).
Favorite card: Minnie Rojas (303). I love those old California Angels uniforms, especially the caps that had the silver halo stitching around the top.
Best photograph: Dick Green (303) and the A’s player patting him on the shoulder after another excellent fielding play.
Best career: Rusty Staub, a six-time All-Star, enjoyed a 23-year career playing for the Houston Colt 45’s/Astros, Montreal Expos (twice), New York Mets (twice), Detroit Tigers, and Texas Rangers. He would among over 2,700 hits, nearly 300 dingers, drove in 1,400-plus runs and hit .279.
Number of Red Sox: Zero.
Past/Future Red Sox: One; Mike Ryan (306) who had been a .201 hitter with the Sox from 1964-1967. After the ’67 season he was traded with cash to the Philadelphia Phillies for Dick Ellsworth and Gene Oliver.
Gene Michael almost appeared with the Sox. He signed as a free agent in February of 1976 but was released a couple months later.
Interesting fact: Minnie Rojas’ career last only three years (he was 32 as a rookie in ’66), but in 1967 he led the A.L. in saves with 27 and games finished with 53.
1968 Topps #379-387
Card that completed the page: Two here; Boog Powell (381) and Jim “Catfish” Hunter (385)
Favorite card: I’ll go with Boog Powell here set against the backdrop of old Yankee Stadium but I’m also a sucker for All-Star cards.
Best photograph: Joe Foy (387), I just love these vintage, classic fielding shots … really wish Topps would bring this style back to todays flagship issue. I feel there’s too many action shots and would like to see some classic poses and candid imagery.
Best career: Catfish as he’s in Cooperstown and was one of the American League’s best pitchers during the 1970’s with the Oakland A’s and New York Yankees. He grabbed one Cy Young Award in 1974 but easily could have grabbed another in either 1973 or 1975. He also was selected to eight All-Star teams during his career.
Number of Red Sox: One; Joe Foy who had flashes but will be one of many, many on the list of “what might have beens” for the Red Sox. While a good teammate, had some off the field issues as well as conditioning question marks. After three years, Foy would be exposed to the expansion draft in the Winter of ’68 where the Royals would select him in the 4th round.
Past/Future Red Sox: Two; Gary Peters (379) yet again and Ramon Hernandez (382). Ramon wrapped up a nine-year career in Boston after the Cubs traded him for Bobby Darwin in May of 1977. After 12 appearances the Sox had seen enough and released him in August that Summer.
Interesting fact: Foy was named the 1965 Minor League Player of the Year by The Sporting News, won the International League batting title, was chosen to the International League All-Star team as a third baseman, and was named the league’s rookie of the year and Most Valuable Player.
And with that, four more crossed off my 1968 Topps Set quest. Thank you for reading!