Wild Card Wednesday – Toronto Blue Jays
Since I went with the Seattle Mariners last week, the Toronto Blue Jays seemed like the most obvious team to go with next on Wild Card Wednesday. Obvious because the Mariners and Blue Jays both started as Major League Teams in 1977.
Let’s take a look:
First up, the cheerful face of Bobby Cox from his 1985 card. The 1978 Doug Rader card is included for two reasons. 1.) His final MLB season was in 1977, the Blue Jays released him in Spring Training of 1978. 2.) The Red Rooster became an MLB manager for three different teams: Texas Rangers, Chicago White Sox (Two games as an interim manager after TLR was fired in 1986), and the California Angels. The ’81 and ’78 team photos are included along with the prospects from 1979.
All of the players below would be Milwaukee Brewers at some point in their careers. Vuke without the Fu Manchu just looks…wrong. Roy Howell without the beard….eh. I have no strong opinion one way or the other.
I have two cards of the Blue Jays from 1977. One is Andy Ashby. Bob Bailor was the first Blue Jay. Toronto selected him from the Baltimore Orioles with their first selection of the MLB Expansion Draft in 1976. Jesse Barfield was really good. If I had known what fantasy baseball was in the 1980s, Jesse Barfield would have been on my team….a lot. Otto Velez was named the American League Player of the Month in April of 1977. He hit .442 with five homers and 18 RBI in 21 games during the first month of Toronto Blue Jays on field history.
Danny Ainge played professional baseball while he was still playing college basketball for BYU. That Fleer card from 1981 is from the same year that he did this to Notre Dame in the NCAA Tournament. Jesse Jefferson’s cards from 1978 and 1980. The 1980 card was his last with the Blue Jays. Jefferson was claimed by the Pittsburgh Pirates off waivers in September of 1980 and finished that season with the Bucs.
I really don’t know how I wound up with Jim Clancy in four different seasons. Luck of the draw. Judging by his smile in the three posed cards, he apparently enjoyed his time in Toronto. Alfredo Griffin’s final game in the major leagues ended in an amazing way. He was on-deck in Game Six of the 1993 World Series when Joe Carter did this. Nice way to go out.
Ron Fairly, who also played for the Montreal Expos, did not play for Toronto in 1978, the year of the card. The other Blue Jays card I have from 1977 is Dave McKay. The Cecil Fielder card is from 1986, his first full season in the major leagues. I have four Jim Clancy cards and only one Dave Steib card. Lloyd Moseby was the second overall pick in the 1978 draft. He would be part of this Mid-80’s Blue Jays outfield: Moseby, Barfield, and George Bell. The Blue Jays from 1984-1993 were a fun team to watch and Moseby was there through 1989. John Mayberry will always be a Kansas City Royal to me.
Past Wild Card Wednesday’s: