Tuesday, November 20, 2012

#116 - Dennis Boyd

What a card: This is the first Topps card for Dennis "Oil Can" Boyd. He appeared in both the 1984 Fleer and Donruss sets.

My observation on the front: It's difficult to tell whether Boyd is wearing one of the gold chains that he enjoyed wearing -- and that got himself into trouble with Yankees manager Billy Martin -- or if it's just a printing flaw.

More opinion from me: Topps can't escape mention for never using Boyd's nickname on the front of his cards. I know Topps was a stickler for avoiding nicknames in most cases (until the Rock Raines saga came along). But nobody knew Boyd as "Dennis." As for the other card companies at the time, Score also stuck to "Dennis." Fleer interchanged between "Dennis" and "Oil Can." Donruss embraced "Oil Can" from the very beginning. And Upper Deck went with "Oil Can" when it came along in '89, because they had to be trendy.

Something you might know: Boyd was nicknamed "Oil Can" because of his fondness for beer, which is sometimes called "oil" in his native Mississippi. Beer, according to his manager and pitching coach in 1986, also was what cost him the Game 7 start in the '86 World Series. John McNamara and Bill Fischer said he was drunk and couldn't pitch.

Something you might not know: This is the second straight card in the set in which the player featured is known for referring to himself in the third person. Total coincidence, but well-done just the same.

My observation on the back: 23 feet? So what? The 37-foot-high Green Monster is not impressed.

The blog wants to speak now: The Pop Culture tab has been updated.

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