Thursday, May 22, 2014

Bob Aspromonte #467

Bob Aspromonte had a 13 year career in MLB. Born in Brooklyn, his career in baseball started with a one game appearance for his hometown Dodgers in 1956. It took another 3 years before he played his next game in the bigs, after the Dodgers bolted for the west coast. Bob played all the positions on the left side of the park - third, shortstop and left field., as well as games on the right side of the diamond at second and first. A solid every day player, he finished his career as a lifetime .252 batter.

Bob was drafted to the Colt 45s in the expansion draft of 1961, spending 7 years in Houston before being dealt to the Braves. After 2 years in Atlanta, Aspromonte was sent to the Mets for his final year, being released after the 1971 season.

Claim to fame: Bob was the favorite ball player for a child, Bill Bradley, that was blinded in a freak lightning accident. The child visited Aspromonte in Houston and asked Bob to hit him a home run, Aspromonte was not known as a long ball hitter, but agreed to the request. At the game that night, Bob hit a home. The following year, still blind Bill visited Aspronte in Houston and after the meeting, again asked Bob to hit him a home run. Aspromonte went deep again, this time with a grand slam.

In 1963, after surgeries that gave Bill back some sight, he meet with Bob a third time, and just as before, requested a home run from the ball player. At the time, Aspromonte was in a hitting slump and asked if a couple of base hits would do. "You're really pushing your luck," Bob replied. However, coming to the plate in the bottom of the first, Bob swung a Tracy Stallard offering and hit another grand slam.

Comic answer: Candlestick Park 42,500

Card condition: Poorly centered. Light rounding of the corners and a few creases in the center of the card. The back is also off center with minor dirt. Comic answer is visible from age/dirt and not from someone rubbing with a coin.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Pete Runnels - #121

Pete Runnels played a 14 year career through Major League baseball, breaking in with the Senators in 1951. A right handed infielder that batted from the left side of home, Runnels was a contact hitter over driving the ball for distance.

Pete moved to the Red Sox in 1958, where he was for his '60 and '62 batting titles. He lost out on winning the 1958 battling crown in the final game of the season, losing to Ted Williams (.328 to .322). After winning the title in 1962, Runnels was traded to the Houston Colt .45s playing through 1963 before Houston released him early in 1964. He became a coach for Boston in 1965-66 and finished the last 16 games of the '66 season as interim manager, going 8-8.

Claim to fame: Pete's 1960 batting title holds a record. Runnels grabbed the batting crown while having the lowest runs batted in total (35) for any batting title winner.

Comic answer: Warren Spahn, Milw Braves, 22 full games

Card condition: Soft corners. Upped left corner is dinged in pretty hard, along with a nick along the right side of the card. Minor surface scratches. Back is in very nice shape.