7.22.2009

Danny Tartabull and Bobby Bonilla, 1992 Rembrandt Ultra Pro

Names: Danny Tartabull and Bobby Bonilla
Teams: New York Yankess, New York Mets
Positions: Vegas headliners (offseason only)
Value of card: Two cumberbunds
Key 1991 stat: Two shows a night, except holidays
Dinner and a show: Las Vegas was abuzz in the fall of 1991 when baseball sluggers Danny Tartabull and Bobby Bonilla announced they would spend their offseason putting on a Rat Pack-style show at the recently opened Mirage hotel and casino. But the excitement wore off quickly on opening night, when a drunken Tartabull staggered onto the stage and asked, "What are all you people doing in my room?" Many thought he was stealing Dean Martin's old opening line — until he vomited into the orchestra pit. Tartabull then staggered offstage and Bonilla, wearing a bow tie that looked like it had been stolen off a clown's corpse, took over and told dead baby jokes for the next 20 minutes. Most of the crowd left, demanding a refund; the rest began heckling Bonilla mercilessly. At this point, Tartabull re-emerged, an Old-Fashioned in his hand, and started berating the audience, asking how many of them had ever homered twice, banged a Scores girl and downed a fifth of Tanqueray in one night. Bonilla raised his hand, the pair high-fived and then broke into the finale, a slurred, off-key duet of "New York, New York." The show was cancelled the next morning, but the undeterred duo opted to keep performing, moving the act to a bum-ridden alley near the Pioneer in downtown Vegas.

Card contributed by Clay Deas

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