Wednesday, August 21, 2013
#204 - Art Howe
What a card: This is Art Howe's final card as a player. He played in just four games for the Cardinals in 1985. He'd pop up as a manager for the Astros four short years later in the 1989 Topps Traded set.
My observation on the front: It is very bizarre to see Howe in anything other than an Astros uniform.
More opinion from me: I have a few lasting memories of Howe, but one is the epic 1980 NLCS against the Phillies, which was broadcast by ABC. Howard Cosell, who would latch onto players and ideas and grind them into the ground probably because he was bored with the sport, started calling Howe "The Man." And he would not stop. To this day, if you say "Art Howe" and my father is in the room, he will say, "The Man."
Something you might know: Howe was a versatile infielder for the up-and-coming Astros, but later drew more fame as a manager for the Astros, Mets and the "Moneyball"-era A's.
Something you might not know: Howe's dissatisfaction with his portrayal in "Moneyball" -- both the book and the movie -- is well-known. I have to agree with him on the movie part with a little insight of my own. Not only did I watch Howe during his career on television, but I interviewed him in person when he managed the Astros. Howe is a pleasant guy who has this way of talking as if he's amused by everything -- but not in a sarcastic way. He seems happy. I didn't get any of that from Philip Seymour Hoffman's Howe character. Hoffman's Howe was stubborn and humorless. That's not the Howe I saw.
My observation on the back: A computer programmer in 1971, huh? I can only imagine what that was like. Lots of punch cards, I'll bet.
The blog wants to speak now: The Ballgames category is updated.