Friday, October 9, 2009

Airbrushed Fridays: 1987 Topps #321

This card would make the list of 10 Airbrushed Cards You Should Own, were such a thing to exist. It's well known, but I'm completely burned out on baseball right now and decided to go with a Cardinals card and something easy today.

Mike Laga played nine MLB seasons and never once accrued more than 100 ABs in a year. He was a perennial September call-up, but that's about it. He also had a really terrible looking baseball card.

Why did Topps airbrush Mike's photo? Better question - why did Mike even have a baseball card? If it were up to me, you'd see the whole team's 25-man roster in each flagship set, but you don't see Mike Lagas in sets like this anymore.

What's wrong with this picture, anyway? Just... look at it. You have an absurdly drawn cap, complete with crayon-drawn logo and the requisite haloing effect around the outside of it. Pink jersey. Pink! This was long before every team had their own line of "girl"-oriented pink clothing and ballcaps. It's like the "artist" was trying to remember if the Cardinals still wore baby blue road jerseys or if they had changed colors. And rather than bother to do any research or ask, like, somebody who actually appreciates baseball, they decide that their weekend is growing closer and closer and they'll just touch it up with whatever ink is leftover in the brush. Nevermind that the person who used it last was probably doing some work on some Strawberry Shortcake trading cards.

See, Topps, even Donruss got it right, and they were supposedly the inferior company at the time. They cared enough about the man who got 46 Cardinal ABs in 1986 to include him in their set in a proper warmup jersey.

As for me, I'm on an indefinite break from baseball right now. I can't remember the last time I was more disappointed in a Cardinals team than I am right now. Hopefully they'll turn it around, but they're running out of chances.


Collective Troll said...

That Topps card freaked me out as a kid!!! I remember asking my parents why it looked like that and they blamed the printer or something. When I presented them with 5 copies that looked like that, they asked if I was hungry... 22 years later I get the real story! Thanks CoC!

Jeff Mazdra said...

Laga actually hit a fowl ball out of old Busch Stadium, totally out of the park.