Wednesday, February 1, 2017

#624 - Benny Ayala

What a card: This is Benny Ayala's last Topps flagship card from his career. He does appear in the 1985 Topps Traded set.

My observation on the front: This is kind of the perfect photo for Ayala. A well-known platoon player who was very familiar with sitting the bench during games, Ayala would often sit off by himself to think and do his hitting homework.

More opinion from me: When the current Orioles wear the the throwback uniforms and caps with the cartoon bird on the white cap background, it looks almost comical. But back when that was the regular uniform there didn't seem anything comical about it. It helped that the Orioles were very good when they were wearing those hats and uniforms.

Something you might know: Ayala was part of manager Earl Weaver's regular platoon with players like Terry Crowley, John Lowenstein and Gary Roenicke. Ayala thrived in the platoon and is remembered for the three-run home run he hit against the Pirates in Game 3 of the 1979 World Series, as well as a clutch single against the Phillies in the 1983 World Series.

Something you might not know: Ayala is the first Puerto Rican to hit a home run in his first major league at-bat. It came when he played for the Mets in 1974.

My observation on the back: The last pitcher to have as many as 13 complete games in a season was Curt Schilling (15) in 1998.

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

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