Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Awesome Shea Cards - Part Two

When I was a kid, the Braves were never something you had to worry about. Eventually, the 1990's and beyond would change all that and the Braves have relentlessly haunted and humiliated the soul of every Met fan since.

But these cards come from those earlier innocuous years. Paul Zuvella's career stats boast a .222 batting average, just two home runs and 20 RBI's. His biggest claim to fame might be that spent time in the minors with the Durham Bulls (as in the film Bull Durham). I love this Shea card as its vantage point has you looking directly into the Shea visitor's dugout, which at the time was adorned with brown faux wood paneling, reminiscent of a suburban Long Island basement lounge.

Davey Johnson is another story entirely. At the time this card was made, Shea had not been kind to Davey Johnson. As an Oriole, he had made the last out to give the Mets the World Series title in 1969. In this card, we see yet another of Johnson's struggles. This card is often considered one of the most humiliating baseball cards ever made. We join Johnson mid swing, badly missing a ball which you see just to the right of him above his rump.

Johnson's card is perhaps a good life lesson. Here is a man we might assume to be beset by some Shea Stadium curse. But years would pass and circumstances would change. Johnson would become a manager. Of the Mets. And lead them to the world title in 1986.

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