Sunday, August 12, 2012

1960 Topps Mike Cuellar

I know that sometimes this seems like the "Mike Cuellar Blog" but it's just that I have a lot of his memorabilia on hand. I've mentioned several times how much of a favorite he was.

Cuellar was on my mind again just just this past Friday because one of my favorite bloggers, William from Foul Bunt, featured an Cuellar autographed ball he picked up at the National.

I've also mentioned how much I enjoy the 1960 Topps set so the Cuellar card would naturally be one I'd cherish. Ignoring for a moment the fact that Topps used the same picture twice on the front of the card, check out the cartoon. They show a pitcher wearing a Castro-like beard and refer to Cuellar being discovered while pitching for the Cuban Army team. I guess they were trying to be timely as Fidel Castro had taken over Cuba on New Year's day of 1959.

And it looks like Topps had one, and only one, Cuellar photo in their files. The '60 card repeats the same picture  (twice) that first appeared on the '59 Cuellar 'Rookie'.

Over on my Topps '59 blog I related a story of how i came to be sitting next to Mike Cuellar at a game in the Astrodome. And somewhere in my boxes of 'stuff' is a ball he tossed to my brothers and I in the old Arlington Stadium. We were seated in the first row of the outfield stands and Cuellar was doing some warning track laps during batting practice. My two younger brothers would shout "Mike, throw me a ball!!" every time he passed under us. Eventually he did.