Saturday, November 16, 2013

From the Pedro Binder

2003 Topps League Leaders: AL Strikeouts

Sweet Mary, what an awful card.

I’ve mentioned before that the danger with putting more than on league leader on a single card is ending up with undesirable combinations. This is certainly one of those.

If we ignore the obvious defect, the card is a bit bland, but understandable. It uses the same style found on all the 2003 Topps cards. The blue borders. The thick colored band. The picture with both sharp and rounded corners. In converting that to a three-player card, it ended up a little blah. While I don’t think I’d want Topps completely redefining the look of the League Leaders cards, there must have been something they could have done. This looks like they’re just sticking the three pictures on the card.

Then, there’s the big problem. My Pedro card has been soiled by the presence of not one, but two Yankees! The horror. Not just any Yankees, either. The big lying cheat, and the wuss. Clemens, who went to Toronto because it was closer to Houston, and Mussina who went to NY because he didn’t feel like the Sox would win him a ring. (Who knows, he might be right. Maybe with him, the Sox wouldn’t have won in 2004) So, I have to stare at those two mugs every time I flip through the Pedro binder. Topps doesn’t even point out that Pedro was the league leader. Unless you assume it goes right to left, you’d have no idea that Pedro bested those other two slugs. In the old days, a kid probably would have cut the card to remove the offending elements.

That’s not a terrible idea in this case.

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