Friday, September 23, 2011

Airbrushed Fridays: 1976 Topps Traded #158T

There are six games left in the MLB regular season. Six! What happened to this season? What happened to summer? Where did the time go? Why was last night's season premiere episode of NBC's Community so... blah?

Ken Reitz was a former All-Star and Gold Glove winning third baseman who played most of his career with the St. Louis Cardinals in an era where the Cards were just flat out not very good. St. Louis has had this even/odd decade thing going on, where they have traditionally been far less successful in odd decades. Let's hope that trend ends this decade.

Why did Topps airbrush Ken's photo? Reitz (pronounced like "beets") was dealt to the Giants after 4 seasons with the Cards in December of 1975, only to be returned to St. Louis the following offseason. After three more years with the Cards, he would eventually be involved in the deal that would bring future HOFer Bruce Sutter to town.

What's wrong with this picture, anyway? Where do I start, with the glowing navy blue cap or the ridiculous smudgy crayon look of the 'SF' logo? Whoever came up with the banner headline on these early Traded set cards was at least thinking straight, knowing that they could usually cover up most of the jerseys.

If you are interested in obtaining a card featured here, please send me an e-mail. If you have a card you would like to nominate for Airbrushed Fridays, please get in touch as well. I will require that I am able to see the card in person, either on loan or as a donation, so that I can examine the card and experience it in all its cruddiness.

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