When opening a pack of Chicle yesterday, these six cards fell out:
#206 - Hall of Famer, Hammerin' Hank. The Jewish people's first superstar in any American professional sport.
#241 - Hall of Famer, Big Six. Owner of 373 victories and one of the first five players inducted into the Hall.
#226 - Hall of Famer, The Scooter. Winner of 7 World Series titles and one of the most memorable announcers ever.
#216 - Hall of Famer, Hoot. Compiled a 1.12 ERA in 1968. That's all you need to know.
#219 - Hall of Famer, Steady Eddy (odd painting). Hit 504 career home runs, and he did it without saying a damn thing.
And this guy.
Cue the music:
Can you guess which one is not like the other?
Listen, I realize that they have been mixing rookies I've never heard of with stars or Hall of Famers for more than a decade now. Card companies have based entire sets around that concept. It's their cynical way of selling a product.
But I've never seen it presented so starkly before, in one single pack. What a disappointment, pulling all those Hall of Famers, in what could have been an epic pack by my standards, and then ending up with some catcher I don't know. (In the other pack, I pulled a card of Moore "re-imagined on a 1989 Topps design).
This is the point where a Mariners fan speaks up and tells me about how wonderful Adam Moore is and that he's going to be a superstar and I should really do my research.
Wonderful. I'm very happy for him. But I don't care. I don't care if he becomes the greatest player in Seattle history, reaches the Hall of Fame and his accomplishments dwarf all of the accomplishments of Greenberg, Mathewson, Rizzuto, Gibson and Murray combined.
The point is he isn't now. He doesn't belong. If the six of these guys were heading onto the plane for their last road trip of the season, a traditional time for a little rookie hazing, I know which one would be wearing the Little Bo Peep outfit.
It's time to stop putting a whole slew of rookies in every product line. Sometimes it just doesn't fit. Come on, that's why we have Bowman.