I've used the title before, but it fits.
No doubt the main pieces of this trade with Baseball Dad were a couple of CCs for the collection, but when I saw these cards I fell over. Under "What I Collect" I listed "Durham Bulls cards," but let's face facts: at one point people were trying to distribute minor league cards on the level of the Major League baseball cards, but aside from last year's Obak that's just no longer the case. In all likelihood NO ONE has these cards and if they do they are buried in a forgotten shoebox of junk wax from the late '80s. Well, Baseball Dad went the extra mile and pulled out this Steve Avery.
Now let's be straight: Avery had three AWESOME years for the Braves (91-93), during which time he posted ERAs of 3.38, 3.20, and 2.98. I've read more than a few articles that describe the cost of that success as being the health of the young pitcher's arm. After '93 Avery never started more than 29 games in a year. By comparison, from 91-93 he started 35 games a year. This is a great card of Steve in the minors back when things were simpler and the Bulls had been a Braves affiliate forever.
Next up, a much more recent Joey Gathright.
Gathright has pretty much cemented his status as a AAAA player with amazing speed and a good glove. His problem is getting on base to use that speed. Now, this is in no way to denigrate Gathright. On the contrary, he was drafted in the 32nd Round of the amateur draft. In other words, he was originally projected to be the type of guy teams use as fodder for superstars in the making in low-A and who are pretty much let go at the end of their first contract. Gathright made the bigs.
This is even a great card of Joey Gathright working on his bunting game. It was taken in Durham (home unis plus Bulls dugout on the 1B side) during the Bill Evers era. Evers was the ONLY AAA manager the Bulls had ever had until Charlie Montoyo came along in 2005. If you remember anything about that year, you'll see why management thought it was perhaps best to go in a new direction and fire THE ENTIRE AAA coaching staff.
Thanks again for the awesome cards Baseball Dad!
Have a good one everybody and goodnight Pumpsie Green, wherever you are!