Name: Frank Emanuel
Team: Miami Dolphins
Value of card: One sad
Key 1968 stat: Constantly bullied
Conversation between Topps photographer and Frank Emanuel, Aug. 14, 1968:
TP: "OK, Frank, let's start by having you take a knee and remove your helmet. The kids love that pose."
FE: (Lets out forlorn sigh, kneels down) "OK..."
TP: "Um, OK, good, now just take off your helmet, please."
FE: (Lets out forlorn sigh) "I can't."
TP: "Why not?"
FE: (Lets out forlorn sigh) "Because Csonka super-glued my helmet to my ears and said that if I do manage to take it off, he'll punch me in the duodenum." (Lets out forlorn sigh) "I don't even know what that is."
TP: "Wow. Well, can you at least tilt your head down a little so your eyes aren't covered by that 14-pound facemask?"
FE: (Lets out forlorn sigh) "I can't."
TP: "Oh lordy."
FE: (Lets out forlorn sigh) "Bob Griese got the locks changed at my house, so I had to sleep in my car last night." (Lets out forlorn sigh) "I can't move my neck at all. And I don't know who will feed Captain Stinky."
TP: "Captain Stinky?"
FE: "My bunny."
TP: "OK then. Well, can you at least smile for me?"
FE: (Lets out forlorn sigh)
TP: "You know what? Never mind. (Takes photo) Next!"
Name: Braulio Castillo
Team: Philadelphia Phillies
Positions: Outfielder, suave pirate
Value of card: Two diamonds (silhouetted against the wall in the background)
Key 1991 stat: 172 swordfights won
Well, hello there: This is Braulio Castillo
Name: Rex Hudler
Team: California Angels
Positions: Second base, outfield
Value of card: 180 pounds of crazy
Key 1994 stat: One restraining order filed against him by a pole
Well, that explains it: Baseball players are notorious pranksters. They leave chewing gum bubbles on teammates' hats, they cover each other in shaving cream after big performances, and they're prone to the occasional hotfoot. But the Angels got really crazy in late 1994, when they covered a dugout pole with Super Glue, attached to it a photo of Chuck Finley's soon-to-be-wife, Tawny Kitaen, and told the gullible Rex Hudler that it was really her and that she wanted to make out with him. Hudler literally jumped at the chance, wrapping his limbs around the post, only to realize too late that he had been hung out to dry. He soon began yelling at teammates, fans and the Topps photographer, demanding that he and his two-dimensional lady-friend be cut free.
Name: Haj Turay
Team: New York Mets
Value of card: One bizarre mini-bulge
Key 2002 stat: Hit, Haj Turay? No! Eh? No!
Clearing up some rumors about Haj Turay:
- Haj Turay was not, in fact, a gremlin. He just smiled like one.
- Despite how he's holding the bat in the above photo, Haj Turay did, in fact, get paid to play baseball.
- Despite what it says, this was not Haj Turay's first-year card, because Haj Turay never had a first year in the majors.
- Haj Turay did not, in fact, have a helmet with the Mets logo. Rather, he had just spray-painted the above helmet blue and orange and snuck into Shea Stadium.
- Haj Turay did, in fact, smell like old cabbage.
- Haj Turay did, in fact, have the skinniest little chicken legs in the Tri-State Area.
Name: Cliff Floyd
Team: Montreal Expos
Value of card: 50 cents on his 40, homie
Key 1991 stat: Walked outside his house dressed like that without falling on his face in embarrassment
Cliff Floyd dunked a baseball in 1992; some of his other athletic accomplishments:
- He kicked a field goal with a soccer ball.
- He threw a pingpong ball into a soccer net.
- He beat a fully outfitted hockey goalie in a potato sack race.
- He slowly fanned himself with a tennis racquet to cool down.
- He won a horse race during a polo match.
- He ate a badminton shuttlecock without getting ill.
Name: Tom Glavine
Team: Atlanta Boston Braves
Value of card: One ha'penny
Key 1924 stat: Frowned upon that new style of music called "jazz"
Tom Glavine's 1920s-era Internet dating profile (yes, we know it doesn't make any sense
Screen name: Thomas Michael "Tom" Glavine
Age: A hale 28
Height: 18 hands
Weight: 1.75 hundredweights
Hair color: Tawny
Hairstyle: Slicked back
Religious views: Quaker
Marital status: My parents are still looking for a match
Want children? To pull the plow
Best feature: Stirrups
Smoke? Sure, the doctor says it's healthy
Drink? And how! Er, I mean, I'm no bootlegger!
Seeking: A classy dame
Location: The backseat of my Model T, er, that is, Boston!
Her body type: Corseted
Her ethnicity: Scandalous!
About me: I'm a simple farmer who plays ball during the dog days. I'm looking for a simple doll who isn't afraid to crank up the horseless carriage and hit the road for exotic locales like Cleveland and even St. Louis. I've caroused with my share of flappers, but I believe my speakeasy days are in the past. I'm ready to settle down with a loving bird and do the Lord's work. ... Oh, applesauce, why do I jest? I can't get enough of the hooch and the molls who come with it. Let's you and me get dolled up, get fried, and get some nookie.
Name: Ryne Sandberg
Team: Chicago Cubs
Position: Second base
Value of card: Getting mauled by a rhino
Key 1991 stat: At least three shirts worn at all times
Well, hello: There it is. Where? Just above the Bust cup, as though you couldn't see it. It's clearly the focal point of the card, and it's staring right at you. Does it fluster you? Good. You look at it and know it has a checkered past. You feel its presence and know that it's seen more action than you ever will. Even Ryne Sandberg himself is afraid to acknowledge its presence. You can't help but be in awe of its girth and mutter a four-letter word. "Cubs." Wait, what? We were talking about the Cubs logo. What were you looking at?
Name: Rob Dibble
Team: Cincinnati Reds
Value of card: It's nasty
Key 1991 stat: 999 times being nasty
Rob Dibble is talking to you: "Yo. I'm Rob Dibble, and I'm a Nasty Boy. That's right, I'm nasty. How nasty? I like to swim in raw sewage. I enjoy cleaning my teeth with motor oil dipsticks. I live in a trash bin, in a junkyard, in Detroit. Yeah, I'm nasty. I once wore Norm Charlton's jockstrap as a necklace, and stored my hard-boiled eggs in Randy Myers' tighty-whities. Yeah! Nasty! For breakfast, I have whatever's rotting. For lunch, I throw up in my mouth. For dinner, Hawaiian barbecue. Ooh, yeah. That's nasty. I once saw John Kruk in the nude. I took a photo. I put it in my locker. Next to a lock of his chest hair. Oooooh, nasty! Like my gelled-up hair? Guess what: It's not gel. Nasty boy! Oooooh, so nasty. Tell Marge Schott I'm game. Nasty!"
Name: Tom Glavine
Team: Atlanta Braves
Positions: Ace, left wing
Value of card: 2 pounds of Zamboni sludge
Key 1991 stat: 14 calls for icing
It's time for a one-man, two-sport edition of The Matchup:
Round 1: Penchant to get involved in a "two-on-one" (Winner: Hockey Glavine)
Round 2: Disgust at eating a moose and maple syrup sandwich (Winner: Baseball Glavine)
Round 3: Mullet (Winner: Tie)
Round 4: Sweet turtleneck that allows for mullet tucking (Winner: Baseball Glavine)
Round 5: Footwear that makes him a bit taller around the ladies (Winner: Hockey Glavine)
Round 6: Nose for the crease, so to speak (Winner: Hockey Glavine)
Round 7: Longer stick (Winner: Hockey Glavine)
Score: Hockey Glavine 4, Baseball Glavine 2, Ties 1
Synopsis: It was a close Matchup when Canadian Hockey Glavine took on his clone, Atlanta Baseball Glavine, but, in the end, Hockey Glavine ended up with a powerplay while Baseball Glavine spent two minutes in the box for getting embarrassed.
Name: Frank Viola
Team: New York Mets
Value of card: 11 rotting apple cores
Key 1990 stat: 10 fruits thrown during games
10 instances of Frank Viola throwing fruit, and the outcome of each:
10) He threw a grapefruit, and the players at spring training in Florida thought it was appropriate.
9) He threw a banana, and the phallic jokes ensued.
8) He threw a blueberry, and it was his only strikeout of the day.
7) He threw a nectarine, and then pointed to his turtleneck.
6) He threw a kumquat, and everyone started giggling.
5) He threw a lemon, and Chet Lemon charged the mound.
4) He threw a tomato, and then realized Mets fans were also throwing tomatoes, at him.
3) He threw a tangerine with that hairdo, and someone yelled, "Hey, fruit!"
2) He threw a watermelon, and some slugger named Gallagher hit a home run with a sledgehammer.
1) He threw a big apple, and 42,712 New Yorkers booed the obvious pun.
Name: Cal Ripken Jr.
Team: Baltimore Orioles
Value of card: A piece of coal
Key 1991 stat: Played chicken with 13 Baltimore-area trains
Hit the snooze button: What does the locomotive symbolize in your bizarre dream about a very stern Cal Ripken?
A) An upcoming journey
B) Your lack of control in life
C) An oncoming disaster
D) Your fondness for antiquated technology
E) Will you just get up and piss already?
F) None of the above
Name: Rickey Henderson
Team: Oakland A's
Position: Half-naked outfielder
Value of card: $1.99/minute (must be 18 or older)
Key 1991 stat: Zero hits from a sitting position
We'll be giving you nightmares all week: The Score Dream Team sets of the early 1990s contained some of the most awkward, misdirected and erotic shots ever featured on cardboard. Sounds like a perfect fit for The Bust. Let's get started, shall we?
It worked so well the first time: We could point out that there's a good chance this boudoir shot of Rickey be Rickey was taken from the previous year's photo shoot. Or, we could analyze the dream presented here. Let's see, the stacked bases likely represent the mounting responsibilities you find yourself facing. Rickey's flat top means that you believe you will need to keep a level head to deal with these tasks. The Louisville Slugger signifies, erm, your desire to go to Louisville? Yeah, that's it. And Rickey's near-nudity? I don't know, but maybe you should stop watching so much Cinemax right before bed, buddy.
Name: Arthur Rhodes
Team: Baltimore Orioles™
Value of card: 12 feathers from carcass of
Key 1991 stat: 47 dead orioles kept in a drawer
Orioles' scouting report on rookie prospect Arthur Rhodes: "We paid him his salary in fake gold jewelry, so it's no big deal if he doesn't pan out. ... If he can get as much movement on his curveball as he does on his mouth, we'll be all right. ... A minus: Falls off the mound after every pitch. ... A plus: Crossed eyes might confuse batters. ... Flipped us 'the bird' upon arrival, which actually fits in well with the Orioles franchise. ... Favorite actor? Dudley Moore. Favorite movie? Yup, 'Arthur.' ... We're always looking for a few good bulges. And this one comes with a twist."
Name: Kurt Stillwell
Team: Cincinnati Reds
Value of card: This 1986 Topps Kurt Stillwell card is worth as much as two other 1986 Topps Kurt Stillwell cards. Why? Because they're all worthless
Key 1985 stat: 4,213 Bloods gang members who owned this jacket
It's time for a blinding-red pop quiz:
How could there be more red on this card?
(A) Stillwell could be a forever-cursed full ginger rather than a forever-cursed half ginger
(B) The whites of Stillwell's eyes could be red, just like the whites of the eyes of all who looked at this card
(C) Stillwell could have been exposed as a Soviet spy 10 seconds before this photo was taken
(D) More zits.
(E) All of the above.
Name: Dick Butkus (shush)
Teams: Chicago Bears, Bushwood Country Club Duffers
Positions: Linebacker, kneeling
Value of card: 7 over par
Key 1992 stat: Two black socks, two white golf shoes
10 "Caddyshack" quotes that could use the word "Butkus":
10) "Last time I saw a mouth like that, it had a Butkus in it."
9) "This Butkus still has marks from where the jockey was hitting it."
8) "In the immortal words of Jean Paul Sartre, 'Au revoir, Butkus.' "
7) "Hey, Butkus, you must have been something before electricity."
6) "Cinderella story, out of nowhere, former greenskeeper, now about to become the Butkus champion!"
5) "When you buy a hat like this, I bet you get a free bowl of Butkus, huh? Oh, it looks good on you, though."
4) "You're a lot of Butkus, you know that? Yeah, wanna make 14 dollars the hard way?
3) "Don't sell yourself short, Judge, you're a tremendous Butkus."
2) (Breaks wind at dinner) "Whoa, did somebody step on a Butkus?"
1) "It's in the Butkus!"
Name: Nolan Ryan
Team: Texas Rangers
Value of card: A used piece of gauze
Key 1990 stat: Tasted his own blood, as well as that of 28 others
Oh, nothing to see here: First off, Jesus H. Christ. Nolan's a real gamer, all right. Of course, we're pretty sure that only some of that is the Ryan Express's own blood. Here's what we believe the reaction would be upon unwrapping this card at various ages:
Ages 5-9: "Mooommmmmyyy!"
Ages 10-17: "Bad frickin' ass!" *Intentionally busts own lip before next Little League/high school game*
Ages 18-26: "Big deal, he's only bleeding from the mouth."
Ages 27 and up: "This makes Schilling's bloody sock look effeminate."
Name: George Alusik
Team: Detroit Tigers
Value of card: Neck lumps
Key 1961 stat: Was 26 years old; looked 46
By George: What nickname did Mr. Alusik's teammates use for him in 1962?
A) Throat Bulge Alusik
B) George Are-You-Sick
C) George Alu-Sit-On-The-Bench
D) That Weenie Who Can't Hit
E) All of the above
Name: Fred Breining
Team: Montreal Expos
Positions: Pitcher, stuffed in locker
Value of card: Hard to see any value here
Key 1985 stat: Didn't play a game in the big leagues
More great work, Topps: Here we have Fred Breining, one of the least photogenic people to ever walk the Earth. The 18-pound glasses, the flowing blond-ish mullet, the sense that he can't actually see anything in focus, even with those spectacles. But where Topps really takes the cake here is with Breining's "outfit." You see, the pitcher was with the Expos all of the 1984 season. Sure, he only played in four games due to a shoulder injury, but apparently Topps was unable for more than a year to get a photographer north of the border to get a shot of him, even just standing around. Instead, they bestowed upon us this treasure, showing Breining, clearly in Candlestick Park, with an airbrushed hat and a jacket so heavily doctored it looks like he's wearing a satin sheet as a cloak. That's just great, guys, you should really take pride in this effort. *puking sounds*
Card suggested by Tyler Kepner
Name: Jay Johnstone
Team: Chicago Cubs
Value of card:
Key career stat: Played for 20 years; played more than 100 games in nine of them
Clearing up some rumors about Jay Johnstone's, um, hat:
- Jay Johnstone's hat is not made from the labels of all the beers he drank last night. It's made from the labels of all the beers he drank in the dugout during the game.
- Jay Johstone's hat is not meant to protect him from rainfall. It's meant to protect him from all the things thrown at him by disgruntled Cubs fans.
- Jay Johnstone's hat is not meant to advertise the King of Beers. I mean, they sell these cards to kids, and alcohol is never marketed to kids, right?
- Jay Johnstone's hat does not say "Budweiser" on it. It says "Cubweiser," a brew that was best enjoyed in 1908 and hasn't been anywhere near as good since.
Name: Rob Deer
Team: Milwaukee Brewers
Value of card: Six deer pellets
Key 1985 stat: Four months of hunting season
Hope you're hungry, it's recipe time: Here's how to cook steamed Rob venison
212 lbs. freshly cleaned Rob venison
14 oz. unkempt mullet mane
6 tbsp. bourbon-infused cheeks
4 pinches unseasoned chin
2 tsp. lip sweaters
Dash of pun
Gently rub the freshly cleaned Rob venison until tender. Add dash of pun. Giggle. Combine venison with mullet mane and toss. Add bourbon-infused cheeks, unseasoned chin and lip sweaters. Boil water. Place venison mixture in massive colander and affix loose-fitting lid. Wait. Wait. Wait. When Rob venison is steamed, run away.
Name: Paul Sorrento
Team: Cleveland Indians
Position: First base
Value of card: $1 (if you tape a dollar to it)
Key 1995 stat: At least one time making the same face as the team logo
Ten dumbest things Paul Sorrento did for photo day at Jacobs Field:
10) Told the photographer that he was "an older, more sophisticated Jim Thome"
9) Put on an Indians uniform even though he was in the process of being traded to Seattle
8) Asked the photog if having his picture taken would steal his soul
7) Shaved his arms
6) Shaved his legs
5) Shaved his back
4) Swore that "Sorrento" is Italian for "immortal ninja"
3) Drank orange juice right after brushing his teeth
2) Took batting practice in center field
1) Smiled like a big doofus all damn day
Name: Phil Simms
Team: New York Giants
Value of card: One protein shake, spilled
Key 1980 stat: Weighed 135 pounds
Places you may have seen Phil Simms around the time the above photo was taken:
- In the middle school cafeteria, eating lunch
- Getting his booster shots at the pediatrician's office
- Trying to sneak into an R-rated movie with his buddies
- Sitting at the soda fountain, reading a comic book
- Waiting impatiently at the beach while his mother slathered sunscreen on him, and then getting sunburned anyway
Name: Brian Hunter
Teams: Detroit Tigers, Westside crips
Positions: Outfield, thief
Value of card: It's worth — wait, where did that money go?
Key 1998 stat: 74 stolen bases (Get it? Get it?)
Let's take a look at Brian Hunter, by the numbers:
- 74: Stolen bases in 1997
- $62: Cost per base
- $4,588: Total cost of stolen bases
- 156: Letters sent by Major League Baseball seeking repayment
- 156: Letters sent by Major League Baseball seeking repayment that Hunter ignored
- 12: Collection agencies that failed to find Hunter behind that mask
- 22: Charges brought against Hunter in a court of law
- 21: Charges on which Hunter was convicted (fashion police charge thrown out)
- 74: Years Hunter was sentenced to prison
- 1: Conviction reversed upon appeal on the grounds that baseball card company Topps was responsible for a gut-wrenching pun that forced Hunter into a life of crime
Name: Joe Randa
Teams: Kansas City Royals; Kmart teen model talent pool
Positions: Third base; posing
Value of card: 1/100th of an ounce of fake gold foil
Key 1991 stat: 14 catalog spreads
Here's what Joe Randa stands for:
Jeans were as tight as his turtleneck was mocked
Obsession cologne overdose could have killed a family of skunks
Everyman look starts with a sweet white-boy wave
Rugby jersey straight from Sears' Cherokee line
Acid-washed jeans drove the ladies wild
Nondenominational church belt shows a touch of class
Dumb look on his face was part of the ensemble
Another example of studly 1990s style
Name: Rodney Craig
Team: Charleston Charlies
Value of card: What?
Key 1992 stat: Where?
Clearing up some rumors about minor-leaguer Rodney Craig:
- Rodney Craig is sooooooo not baked in the above photo. He's just having to squint from the glare off his sweet gold medallion.
- Rodney Craig's medallion does not have any mystical powers like this guy's does. If it did, he wouldn't be playing minor-league ball in Charleston, S.C.
- Rodney Craig is sooooooo not baked in the above photo. Wait, huh? We already said that one? Wait, are there any more Doritos?
- Rodney Craig's head is, in fact, the size of one of Jupiter's moons. He wore a size 9 batting helmet and his teammates called him "Buckethead." No, really, we're not making this one up!
Name: Joe Morgan
Team: Boston Red Sox
Value of card: A bowl of "tomato soup" (actually just a whole tomato in a bowl of warm water)
Key 1988 stat: Saddest eyes in the American League
Fun facts about former Red Sox manager Joe Morgan and Reds Hall-of-Famer Joe Morgan:
- Red Sox Joe Morgan hit .191 in 88 big-league games during his career. Reds Joe Morgan had somewhat better statistics.
- Red Sox Joe Morgan was fired after four seasons despite winning two division titles in that span. Reds Joe Morgan lasted 21 years as an announcer for ESPN despite having just two good calls the entire time.
- Red Sox Joe Morgan spent much of his time sitting on the bench. Reds Joe Morgan once sat on Johnny Bench, after the catcher had fallen asleep in the locker room.
- Red Sox Joe Morgan managed one of the game's all-time leading jerks. Reds Joe Morgan played with one of the league's all-time leading jerks.
Name: Jim Eisenreich
Team: Florida Marlins
Value of card: One used paper towel
Key 1996 stat: Cursed constantly, though it had nothing to do with him having Tourette syndrome
Sad but true: Jim Eisenreich made the horns sign everywhere he went
Name: Dickie Thon
Team: San Diego Padres
Value of card: More when it's ripped up into tiny pieces and used as confetti
Key 1988 stat: 11 showers (all season)
Here's what Dickie Thon stands for:
Dung-colored uniforms smell like they look
Inside that mind? Dirty, dirty thoughts
Caterpillar died above his lip
Killer — lady killer
Insect species by the dozen living in that hair mess
Eyes looking into the sun, and they'll soon melt
Tells women he sang "The Thon Song"
Horrible card crop not as bad as his hair crop
Other than featuring the worst photo of all time, this card isn't that bad
Never was introduced to a comb
Name: Harry Colon
Team: New England Patriots
Value of card: 40 days and nights of laughter
Key 1991 stat: Ran around with "Colon" written on his jersey
Here's what Harry Colon stands for:
Had a knack for wiping
Athletes named after parts of the bowels are always worth a laugh
Remember how good the Patriots were in the early '90s? Neither do we.
Rectum? He damn near killed him!
Yeah, sorry. Forgot his name was Colon, not Rectum. Because that would have been ridiculous.
Clearly, this guy stunk
Oh yeah, he wasn't good at football, either
Lone break in the humiliation came when Patriots signed fullback Hugh G. Reckshon
OK, time for the moral of the story:
Nobody likes a Harry Colon
Card submitted by Douglas Corti
Name: Ricky Bones
Team: Milwaukee Brewers
Positions: Pitcher, chin in hand
Value of card: A delicious rack of baby back ribs, without the meat
Key 1993 stat: 730 mustache grooming sessions
Ricky Bones' online dating profile, circa 1994:
Screen name: DemBones69
Height: 5' 10 1/2"
Relationship status: Single-ish
Want children? Who wouldn't want some little Bones?
Best feature: Here's a hint: It gives free rides
Religious views: My mullet is pretty miraculous
Smoke? No way am I polluting my hair with that smell
Drink? I live in Milwaukee. What do you think?
Seeking: Are there any other Puerto Ricans in Milwaukee? Please?
Her body type: Dairy-free
Her best feature: Mustache. Oh wait, that's me again.
Location: Your place, my place, the dugout
About me: Hi ladies, my name is Ricky. Ricky Bones. That's right, Bones. Uh-huh, yeah. As you can see in my profile picture above, I'm a sophisticated, thinking man who knows how to flatten a mustache and curl a mullet. I could curl your toes, too, if you like. What's that? You want to know what that jersey is in the background? Well, I hate to brag, but I make a living playing baseball for the Milwaukee Brewers. Sure, we lost 93 games last year, but only 11 of those were my fault. Enough about work, let's talk about love. I can picture us now, lying in front of a roaring fireplace on a cow-skin rug, running our fingers through each other's luxurious hair, sipping the finest Old Milwaukee that can be had from the corner store. You'll play shy at first, but let's be honest. We're both looking forward to the same thing: the night when Ricky Bones you.
Name: Kent Tekulve
Team: Philadelphia Phillies
Value of card: Milk spewed out of a nose during a laughing fit
Key 1987 stat: Twelve epileptic fits
Har, har, har: What is Kent Tekulve snickering about?
A) Everyone who's ever tried to pronounce his surname
B) The knock-knock joke he wrote on the inside of his glove
C) The Phillie Phanatic. That fellow is quite jocular!
D) The fact that he had two teammates named Gross
E) Speaking of gross, the fact that he's about to pull his own finger