Monday, April 14, 2014

#282 - The 1984 No. 1 Draft Pick Shawn Abner

What a card: This is the final card in the No. 1 draft pick subset. It recalls the Mets taking Shawn Abner with the No. 1 pick in the 1984 MLB draft. Abner went ahead of other first-round picks like Mark McGwire, Terry Mulholland, Cory Snyder and Jay Bell.

My observation on the front: Abner is wearing a Kingsport Mets uniform. He played for the Rookie League team in 1984, his first year in pro ball.

More opinion from me: You can tell that is a minor league photo from the '80s. Green concrete wall. Shadows everywhere.

Something you might know: Abner was one of the biggest busts among No. 1 picks in major league history. He would never play for the Mets, getting traded to the Padres in 1986 in the deal that brought the Mets Kevin McReynolds. Abner didn't appear on another card until 1988 and not in another Topps set until 1990. His big league career was done by 1992.

Something you might not know: Here is a quote from Abner in the Los Angeles Times in 1991 after it was well-established that he wouldn't live up to his No. 1-pick potential:

"I remember going to this card show over the winter where I was signing autographs. This guy comes up to me with about 1,000 of my rookie cards. He just walks up to me, doesn't say anything, but he shows me his cards and gives me a look like, "Look what I wasted my time on.

"This other one came up and said, 'You can play defense but you can't hit worth a (darn).' And this girl was 3 years old."

My observation on the back: The bio is stunned over Shawn's "amazing .420" batting average, but doesn't bat an eye about the .580 he hit.

The blog wants to speak now: The TV category is updated.

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