Monday, October 6, 2014

C.A.: 1983 Topps Ned Yost

(Welcome to the first night that I get to watch the Dodgers in the playoffs. I am very tempted to go into work and forget that the game is on. Time for Cardboard Appreciation. This is the 213th in a series):

In the last few days, this card has popped up online, in baseball-rooting circles, perhaps more than any other 1980s common card not named LaCock or Kuntz.

The card is a reference to the current Kansas City Royals manager, who seems to enjoy trolling the entire internet with the sacrifice bunt. Even better, sacrifice bunts and stealing bases is actually working for his team. (I can hear people screaming, "Imagine how much he would have won by if he didn't do that!!!!").

But this isn't a commentary on the drawbacks or benefits of the sacrifice bunt. No, it's merely about my observations when a card that I have seen for years suddenly appears everywhere and from the most wide-ranging sources.

I have known this card since 1983, obviously. But, also, it is the display card on the spine of my 1983 Topps binder. Some binders allow you to slip a dupe into the spine to identify what set is in the binder. I selected the Yost card years ago.

There it is:

I see that card every day. Every time I enter the room that holds most of my cards, it's there. Bottom binder, second row. Howdy again, bunting Ned.

When the card suddenly arrived on everyone's Twitter feed and in blog posts, it was almost like seeing the front of my house broadcast across the internet. Wait? Everyone else knows that card, too????????? At first it was alarming. Then I felt a swell of pride.

Is it possible that more than just us card collectors have every 1980s card memorized and ready to whip it out during the most appropriate moment? Are there people pretending they don't like cards -- because collecting is much too childish -- but really harbor secret collections just in case?

I have a feeling this card collecting extends much farther than some people want to admit.

But anyway, it was great seeing a common variety card appear everywhere instead of the usual card suspects.

And Ned will continue to appear on the outside of my binder, no matter where the Royals end up this postseason.

Bunts and baseball cards. Bringing the world together.


  1. I find it humorous that Ned Yost was such a bad hitter that Harvey Kuenn would take the bat out of Ned's hands and have him bunt.

    Then again, looking at the stats for the 1982 Brewers, the only starter without a sacrifice hit was Ben Oglivie. Gorman Thomas was third on the team with 5.

    So, I guess Ned comes by that urge to overmanage honestly.

    Good luck to your Dodgers tonight!

  2. I recently had a friend (who doesn't collect cards but I'm sure did when he was younger) text me some random thing about Razor Shines - when Francisco Liriano scored a run, Shines became the guy with the most plate appearances without a run. I immediately texted him a picture of Shines' 1986 Topps card. I didn't have it handy, but it's easy to find a picture of something on a smart phone and send it. Either way, my friend was a bit amazed, and probably a bit creeped out.