Thursday, March 9, 2017

Awesome night card, pt. 271: who the heck is Fritz Connally?

I was very excited to discover this card when it fell out of a package I received from Shane of Off the Wall a week or two ago.

It was one of a selection of night cards that Shane so thoughtfully placed in a separate team bag. And it was the only player from those cards that I didn't recognize.

Who the heck is Fritz Connally?

That was the question that followed me in the minutes, hours and days as I went through my daily rituals? Fritz Connally? Who? Why? Fritz??

It turns out others have had the same reaction. What a relief that I'm not the only one and also to find some valuable information on the guy. He will be remembered for the first two home runs he hit as a major leaguer -- both with the Orioles in 1985 -- that were each grand slams.

According to the online testimonials, Connally was a superstar athlete growing up in Texas, naturally blessed in every sport and an all-around great guy. His birth name is actually "Fritzie". Really. They do things differently in Texas, don't they?

But the best part of this card for me -- aside from it being a night card -- is it is also a "One-Card Wonder". Connally never appeared in another major-issue set. And since this is from Fleer's 1985 Update set, Connally never appeared in a major flagship set.

This seems rather unusual for the mid-1980s when there were three major card companies. I've yet to really dive into those years in the OCW posts, but it's good to know there's at least one One-Card Wonder from that time -- and his name is Fritz Connally.

Connally's career was brief. After a call-up with the Cubs in 1983 and part of a season with the Orioles in 1985, he retired. He later became a financial advisor.

And if it means anything, he is also the star of the package that Shane sent.

Here are just some of the other night cards in that team bag. I'm looking forward to placing many of these in my night card binder.

As for Dodgers, I received a big lot of those. It's a little difficult to send Dodgers blindly to me and expect them all to stick. I've been doing this for awhile now. But Shane got a few to sneak through:

The early Fleer Tradition sets were purty weren't they?

Remember those throwback variation cards you could find in Target earlier this decade? I bet some of you don't. Remember when Topps replaced them with red and blue border parallels? No? Wow, I'm so old.

Orange-bordered parallels. Yeah, I bet you remember these. They were only three years ago. That was the year that even Topps realized that 15 different colored bordered parallels was too much and ditched most of them the next year.

One of those evil 2016 Dodger cards that eluded my grasp. Yes, I need every last repetitive Jackie Robinson card.

Back to the colored border era, circa 2012-2014. I miss those days. I'd be happy if Heritage scrapped chrome parallels and just did colored borders.

Upper Deck paying tribute to Topps.

Long-forgotten Dodgers prospects.

Mini parallel Dodgers

An Orel Hershiser coin from '89. Can you believe I didn't have one of these already?

And finally, a mess of cards from the monstrous 1990 Target Dodgers set. A whole bunch of old-timey guys here like Babe Dahlgren, Hy Myers, Jigger Statz, Joe Judge and Dolf Camili. The most recent year one of these 23 played was 1948.

Nope, this isn't the Marlins I'm collecting here.

Thanks for all the cool cards, Shane. And for helping me to get to know a guy named Fritz Connally. Or Fritzie, if you want to be formal about it.


Night Card Binder candidate: Fritz Connally, 1985 Fleer Update, #U-30
Does it make the binder?: Unfortunately, no. I can't get it past this card:


  1. Since I'm still new to the blogosphere, I believe this is the first I've heard of a "one card wonder."


  2. Old timers like me like the old timers Target cards.

  3. That Fritzie was a card that I needed for my CATRC for a long time and was completely unaware of it. I, like you, had never heard of a Fritzie Connally and, when I first saw his name, I thought it was some guy who played in the Dead Ball Era. The name Fritzie just feels so much more in place with that time frame.

  4. Connally is from my neck of the woods. Houston recruited him for basketball but he wanted to play baseball but our coach at the time didn't make him an offer. He ended up at Baylor kicking our ass annually in the Southwest Conference. Saw him again in Arlington in '85 when the Orioles played there. He had a lot of family and friends there. I really though he'd have a longer career than he did.

  5. Glad I could find some Dodgers you DIDN'T have--not an easy feet!!!