Wednesday, August 26, 2015

#445 - Tippy Martinez

What a card: Tippy Martinez was coming off a bit a down year when this card was issued. After a standout 1983, Martinez went 4-9 with a soaring 3.91 ERA in 1984.

My observation on the front: Uh oh, Martinez isn't wearing a cap. I wonder if someone at Topps thought he was going to be traded.

More opinion from me: As kids, we thought "Tippy" was a ridiculous name. I am finding out now that his real first name is "Felix". (An aunt gave Martinez the nickname "Tippy").

Something you might know: Martinez was a key figure in the Orioles' World Series-winning season of 1983, saving 21 games and adding two saves in the World Series.

Something you might not know: Martinez halted Ron LeFlore's 30-game hitting streak during the 1976 season. Martinez was playing for the Yankees then and when he was on the mound with LeFlore at the plate, Thurman Munson visited him with LeFlore down 0-2 and the Yankees winning 9-5. Munson told Martinez to give LeFlore a fastball, because Munson felt LeFlore deserved one last fair shot at continuing the streak. Martinez threw a fast ball and LeFlore watched it go by for strike three.

Three years later, Martinez was on the mound facing the Yankees. It was the game after Munson had died in a plane crash. Martinez and the Orioles were ahead 4-3 in the 9th and Bobby Murcer came to the plate with two runners on base. Murcer was in an emotional state, having given Munson's eulogy, and Martinez thought of what Munson did for LeFlore three years earlier. According to the book "Munson: The Life and Death of a Yankee Captain," Martinez said he felt bad for not going to Munson's funeral. With Murcer down 0-2, Martinez remembered the LeFlore advice and sent a fastball toward Murcer on the outside edge. Murcer lined a two-run single to give the Yankees a dramatic 5-4 victory.

My observation on the back: Martinez's wife is named Carol. I don't know if that's the same person that is mentioned here.

The blog wants to speak now: The Pop Culture category is updated.

No comments: