Tuesday, July 21, 2009
1990 Upper Deck #781 782 783 784
Billy Jo Robidoux
It's kind of weird seeing Marshall in a Mets uniform. His career tanked as soon as he went to the Big Apple. (In case of newbies, do not confuse this guy with the pitcher Mike Marshall, who had a much better playing career than the guy whose card is pictured here.) But the photo on the back is quite cool, capturing Marhsall's leg kick in profile.
The two Mike Marshalls were both in the big leagues in 1981 but they did not face each other. The batter got a September 1981 callup but his team didn't face the Mets, which is whom Marshall the pitcher was with at the time.
I talked about this elsewhere, but I recall this Mike Marshall once making all 3 outs in an inning--he made a conventional out as well as hitting into a double play in an inning in which his team batted around. A reader thought this was a spring training game...does anyone remember for sure?
Marshall hit way more homers off Bob Knepper (7) than he did against any other pitcher.
BEST IN 1990
This is a tough call. Robidoux barely played in 1990, Marshall was awful, Sorrento was pretty bad in an early call-up, and Langston had the worst year of his career (10-17 record, 4.40 ERA which was an 86 ERA+)
But I'll give it to Langston because he did pitch 223 innings, which was definitely a big help to his team. Amazingly, he had such a bad year for him and yet gave up only 13 home runs.
The other three cards show the player wearing the same uniform on front and back, which sucks, and in particular Sorrento's card leaves a lot to be desired with a so-so posed shot on the front and a candid shot of him slowly giving himself oral cancer on the back.
But talking of leg kicks, how about Langston's awesome one on the back of his card? It's such a great photo that I can almost forgive Upper Deck for using a photo with most of his face obscured.
Mike Marshall = A hammer kills
Billy Jo Robidoux = Job: I idol burly ox
Mark Langston = Ram long tanks
No doubt it was Mark Langston, who finished 179-158 (.531) despite pitching the first 5.5 seasons of his career with a veyr bad Seattle team. He still led the league in K's 3 times and topped 200 a total of 5 times. He ended up being a very important player for the Mariners franchise as he legitimized them in the 1980s and then was traded for 3 guys including Randy Johnson, who reached his HOF potential with the Mariners.
May 25, 1989: Traded by the Seattle Mariners with a player to be named later to the Montreal Expos for a player to be named later, Gene Harris, Brian Holman and Randy Johnson. The Seattle Mariners sent Mike Campbell (July 31, 1989) to the Montreal Expos to complete the trade.
I'm a little shocked by his neutralized pitching numbers, though. They have him at 153-161 (.487) for his career and never winning more than 16 games in any season (he actually won 19 twice and 17 once.)