Congratulations Curtis Wilkerson and 1989 Fleer for combining to make possibly the greatest baseball card of all time.
After going through 72 packs of this great product last Friday night, besides the Bill Ripken ‘Rick Face’ black scribble, this is clearly the second best card out of the 1,080 flimsy, error-ridden, photography-challenged cards we pulled. I mean, what better shot on a baseball card than an action shot of a game bunt by Curtis Wilkerson!!! It may be debatable about whether Curtis is sacrifice bunting or bunting for a hit. My initial reaction was bunt for a hit due to his back-foot placement and apparent dragging of his top hand down the bat barrel. Of course, this was the late 80’s so who knows what techniques were going on then. If you are wondering Curtis Wilkerson was a 4th round pick of the Texas Rangers in 1980 and was the Rangers’ Rookie of the Year in 1984. He was in the package deal, along with Luis Benitez, Pablo Delgado, Paul Kilgus, Mitch Williams, and Steve Wilson, sent to the Cubs in exchange for Rafael Palmeiro, Jamie Moyer, and Drew Hall. Hmm, who got the better end of that deal? Here are his impressive career stats: 972 Games, 600 hits, 8 HRs, 179 RBIs, 81 stolen bases, and a .245 batting average; this over a 10-year Major League career. Does anybody have any other examples of similar stars caught in the act of bunting?
PS: Oscar Salazar cleared waivers and was re-assigned to the O’s minor leagues; he received an invite to Spring Training as well. We’ll also get to see Jake Arrieta at Spring Training but I doubt he’ll get a shot to make the club considering his only experience is high A-ball and the Olympics.