Friday, September 18, 2009

Airbrushed Fridays: 1987 Topps #124

I've been toying with this idea for awhile and have decided to give it a go. Much like these companies (okay, it's pretty much Topps) give the ol' thumbs-up to some astonishingly bad pieces of "artwork", I have decided to feature an airbrushed card weekly here on the blog. Nominations? Feedback? Suggestions? They're all welcome here.

Ray Fontenot was a former starter turned reliever who bounced around a bit in the mid-'80s. He had, in fact, thrown his final major league pitch by the time this baseball card came around. His Wikipedia entry photo even features another baseball card, which is kind of awesome and sad at the same time. He also looks a bit like a shop teacher and bears an uncanny resemblance to someone I know personally.

Why did Topps airbrush Ray's photo? Well, they certainly had their opportunities to catch Fontenot live and up-close, as he made 15 appearances with the Twins after an August 1986 trade. They must have been scared off by his ERA that was just a shade under 10.00, afraid a stray pitch might inadvertently veer off and nail a Topps photographer or high-priced camera.

What's wrong with this picture, anyway? I suppose you could start with the fact that it looks like no one bothered to finish painting the Twins logo on his cap as it fades into oblivion somewhere near the end of the "T". It also appears that Ray is wearing a red, white and blue medal around his neck.


  1. As a Cardinals fan, I'm sure you're aware of the 1987 Topps Mike Laga card. That should be featured at some point.

  2. For some reason, I have vivid memories of a 1991 Bowman Jose Offerman which looked like they airbrushed his hat and his FACE!

  3. I think this is a good idea. It is interesting to me and though I consider myself observant, I very often never notice airbrushing. (I am an airbrusher's dream!)


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