Name: Buck Martinez
Team: Toronto Blue Jays
Value of card: Whatever Buck finds in his pants
Key 2000 stat: Not once did he say "eh"
10 more candy terms, this time for Buck Martinez:
10) Reese's Big Cup (so that there's room for ol' Hands-in-Pants Martinez)
9) Whatchamacallit (what Buck called the shortstop position)
8) Milk Duds (a lot of his games were duds, that's for sure)
7) Mike & Ike (two guys who would have been better managers)
6) Kisses (not when you've got your hands in your crotch, buddy)
5) Airheads (sums up his coaching style)
4) Snickers (sure, we used it last time, but look at this photo!)
3) Payday (Buck stopped getting them after 1½ seasons)
2) Skor (Jays didn't do much of this under Buck)
1) Nutrageous (guess why)
Card submitted by Douglas Corti
Name: Mike "Lil' Hands" Benjamin
Team: New York Giants, circa 1892
Position: Second basetender
Value of card: 25-cent Civil War-era fractional currency
Key 1892 stat: 27 "tallies" at home base
The Legend of "Lil' Hands": Mike Benjamin was born in a pepper patch in Monks Hammock, La., to a mother who spit with a Cajun accent and a sailor who died of scurvy two weeks after the birth. Mike grew up chasing metal rings with sticks and catching rodents with only his cunning and the raccoon meat he'd secretly regurgitate after his small supper meals. He also grew up alone. The other children who lived in Louisiana houses of sin and back-country caves shunned him because his hands stopped growing at age 4. Benjamin tried to have fun, playing make-believe games with tree stumps and pretending the regurgitated balls of raccoon meat were his friends. Then, he found a new game, "base (pause) ball," played with a round ball, a round bat and a lot of chewing tobacco. He flourished, despite his tiny hands, often playing rover and hitting many a pluck. But, despite his years of success, a keen eye could still catch Benjamin glancing down at his tiny glove with a single tear in his eye and loneliness close at hand.
Name: Jeff Jones
Team: Oakland A's
Value of card: Three pieces of fake cheese from mousetraps with dead mice in them
Key 1984 stat: 26 pounds of yellow jerseys in wardrobe
Jeff Jones was a great student; here are some of the things he got A's in:
- Sleeping upright 101
- Pitching without a ball (lab)
- Beginner's cloud floating
- Cannabis sativa studies
- Mustaches for the modern caveman: An in-depth look
- Butt chin theory
- Upper-division unkempt hair
- Duhhhh photography II
- Advanced unibrow
Name: Wally Moon
Team: Los Angeles Dodgers
Value of card: Six pieces of green cheese
Key 1959 stat: Zero people on the planet — or its only naturally orbiting satellite — with the same name
10 things just discovered on the Moon:
10) Pine-tar deodorant
9) Piercing blue eyes that once stared a hole through a steel beam
8) An Adam's apple so big it has a face
7) Acne craters
6) An expression of displeasure
5) A hat that was sat on by a horse for 18 hours
4) Jagged features that broke razors in half
3) A baggy jersey and pants that would make an early 1990s Compton gangster blush
2) Dengue fever
1) The most legendary unibrow in baseball history
Name: Derek Hill
Team: Phoenix Cardinals
Position: Wide receiver
Value of card: 4 inches of ripped shoelace
Key 1990 stat: Eight hours of leg shaving a week
Transcript from Phoenix-area TV commercial for NFL Women's Wear, circa 1991: "Hello, ladies. I'm Derek "The Thrill" Hill, and I'm here to tell you about NFL Women's Wear, the hottest styles from the hottest sport for you, the hottest females around. NFL Women's Wear features all kinds of styles, and I'm wearing many of them right now. (camera pans slowly from head to feet) Just check out these ladies size 22 Adidas running shoes, and this comfy-omfy sweatshirt, great for curling up with that special guy in your life. And, of course, NFL Women's Wear offers the sexiest booty shorts on the market today, perfect for showing off your freshly shaved legs. Are your legs smooth enough? I know mine are? (camera pans across legs, with light gleaming off them) And our biggest seller (winks) the NFL Women's Wear thong, which I'm sporting right now. Toodles!"
Name: Pete Ladd
Team: Seattle Mariners
Value of card: Fair-use lawsuit documents, shredded
Key 1986 stat: Sang "Like a Surgeon" in the shower 17 times
It's a one-person matchup, between Mariners pitcher Pete Ladd and alter-ego Weird Al Yankovic:
Round 1: Goofy hairstyle (Winner: Tie)
Round 2: Awesome mustache (Winner: Tie)
Round 3: Baseball talent (Winner: Tie)
Round 4: Giant glasses: (Winner: Tie)
Round 5: Career based on parody, whether as a musician or athlete (Winner: Tie)
Round 6: Looks better in leather (Winner: Tie)
Round 7: Funnier name (Winner: Weird Al)
Final score: Weird Al 1, Pete Ladd 0 (Ties: 6)
Synopsis: We knew going in that not much would separate these two, considering they're the same person. In the end, the chuckle we get out of the word "Yankovic" put Weird Al over the top and into an Amish paradise.
Name: Fair Hooker
Team: Cleveland Browns
Position: Wide Receiver
Value of card: Very little money, left on the dresser
Key 1973 stat: Zero "clients" disappointed
Here's the report card on Browns receiver Fair Hooker:
Intensity in this photo: Very poor
Singing voice: Excellent
Stripiness of sleeves: Excellent
Sense of humor about his name: Very, very, VERY poor
Name: Mariano Duncan
Team: Philadelphia Phillies
Value of card: 50 cents? That's a stretch
Key 1994 stat: 42 games of Twister won
Mariano Duncan's train of thought from 5:12 to 5:13 p.m. July 18, 1994: "Oh, boy. I see you over there, lookin' good. You ever seen a real big leaguer like me? A-huh. That's right. Now you're looking my way. Well let me show you something. Let me show you what keeps the fans coming back game after game. And here we go, lift up. That's for you, sweetheart. And down. And up again. Yup, that's muy, muy Mariano, and it's all for you, honey. Down. And one more time. Stretch. Stretch. Stretch. Oh, yeah. That feels good. So, Darren Daulton, what are you doing tonight?"
Card submitted by Fat Shawn Kemp
Name: Bob James
Team: Chicago White Sox
Value of card: Free shower at a truck stop
Key 1987 stat: Scariest facial hair in the Great Lakes region
Here's what Bob James stands for:
Bob didn't much believe in personal hygiene
Odor coming from his hair smelled vaguely of compost
Belt? Cummerbund? Either way, it didn't do a good job of holding up his pants
Just because this shot was taken in a park, doesn't mean he's homeless ...
Actually, yeah, he is homeless
Maybe he's just doing a bad imitation of the Kodiak Brute, Greg Luzinski
Every woman likes a guy with bad posture and a gut, right ladies?
Strikeout rate went way up when batters were downwind from him
Name: Stubby Clapp (sure it is)
Team: St. Louis Cardinals
Position: Second base
Value of card: Four stubs
Key 2001 stat: Three shots of penicillin
Clapp if you want a pop quiz: What do the ladies like best about the man on this card?
A) His crooked nose
B) His child-size mouth
C) His sexy, STD-ridden name
D) His inch-too-low eyebrows
E) Absolutely none of the above, or much else, for that matter
Name: Chuck Finley
Team: California Angels
Value of card: One Kenny G cassette tape
Key 1993 stat: Zero notes played in tune
Top 10 cover bands Chuck Finley pretended he formed:
10) Van Flailin'
9) Bruce Swingsteen and the E-3 Band
8) Ice T-ball
7) Rage Against the Pitching Machine
6) Pink Cliff Floyd
5) System of a Rundown
4) The Uncle Charlie Daniels Band
3) Yo La Swingo
2) The Who's On First
1) ... And You Shall Know Us By the Trail of Tobacco Spit
Name: Gary Anderson
Team: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Position: Running back
Value of card: A dollar for each win the 1976 Bucs recorded
Key 1991 stat: 5,193 backup helmets, pads and jock straps
No one puts baby in a corner: Why has Gary Anderson been locked in an equipment closet?
A) In a case of mistaken identity, his teammates thought he was a kicker
B) He was playing Seven Minutes in Heaven with his helmet
C) He just wanted some privacy while putting on his prosthetic left forearm
D) I don't know, but from the looks of his eye black, he was crying
E) Getting dressed. Get out of here, you perv!
Name: Jaromir Jagr
Team: Team NHL, Pittsburgh Penguins
Position: Right wing
Value of card: 75 years of pissing off your fans
Key 1992-93 stat: 1-inch overbite
Fun facts about Jaromir Jagr, who looks like he's 14 in the above photo, and the alcoholic beverage Jagermeister:
- Jagermeister is a German digestif made with 56 herbs and spices. Jagr is a Czech athlete with 56 zits on his face.
- The makers of Jagermeister recommend that it be kept on ice and served cold. Jagr was rarely cold when he was on the ice.
- The term "jagermeister" once was used as a title for senior foresters in the German civil service. Jagr once woke up in the forest after drinking too much Jagermeister.
- Jagermeister has a picture of a deer head on it. Jagr has another woodland creature, possibly a wolverine, on his head.
- Jagermeister tastes similar to black licorice. So did Jagr's mullet.
- A mixture of Jagermeister and Red Bull is called a Jagerbomb. After eating a trio of gas station hot dogs for dinner, Jaromir's bathroom experienced a Jagrbomb.
Name: Eric Lindros
Team: Philadelphia Flyers
Value of card: An earful of water
Key 1992-93 stat: 310 times mistaken for Iceman from "Top Gun"
Time to drop the
Name: Dave Kryskow
Team: Atlanta Flames (who knew?)
Value of card: More if it were thrown into flames
Key 1974-75 stat: 2,632 minutes in the penalty box (after games; he was homeless for a while)
It's time for a pop quiz that's on ice:
Why was Dave Kryskow known as a creepy player?
(A) He liked to "poke check" a bit too much.
(B) His idea of a "power play" involved duct tape and a rope.
(C) When his team would "pull the goalie," he'd ask for the same treatment.
(D) He was considered a "penalty killer," not because of his prowess when the team was shorthanded, but because of actual killings.
(E) He spent a lot of time in the "referee's crease."
(F) He was an expert at the "slap shot": downing 3 ounces of Winner's Cup vodka and slapping the nearest person.
(G) He dated a zamboni.
(H) All of the above
Name: Steve Smith
Team: Chicago Blackhawks
Value of card: The monetary equivalent of the ink used for that autograph
Key 1994-95 stat: 47 Siberian "huskies" romanced
Steve Smith's dating profile, circa 1994:
Screen name: PuckSchmuck41
Age: 34 or 35; not sure
Height: 1.75 hockey sticks
Weight: 254 hockey pucks
Hair color: Golden
Hairstyle: Coated in 11 pounds of gel
Ethnicity: Russian-Canadian, like the rest of the NHL
Religious views: Cross check
Marital status: Never
Want children? Why?
Best feature: Forehand (up your skirt)
Smoke? Only when I drink
Drink? Only when I drink
Seeking: A Russian babe whose breath is as cold as a Siberian winter
Location: Anywhere in Canada, eh?
Her body type: Buxom and nuded
Her ethnicity: See above
About me: Ladies, feast your eyes on a real man — a hockey man. Just because I spend all day handling my stick doesn't mean I don't have time for your parts, too. As you can see from my sexified profile pic, I don't just play hockey. I also play beach volleyball — in the snow. And I don't just dive around shirtless with the guys like it's "Top Gun"; I also like to sweat with the ladies. You want to get hot on the ice? Just imagine what I'm saving for you in these jean shorts. Let's puck.
Name: Bob Murdoch
Team: Winnipeg Jets®
Position: National Hockey League Coach
Value of card: $3 coupon off your choice of tie at the Men's Warehouse (expired)
Key 1989-90 stat: Six ice cubes in his gin and tonic
The craft at its best: Photojournalism is about more than just getting the prettiest shot and framing it perfectly — which, for the sake of the photographer responsible for this shot, is a good thing. Photojournalism, at its best, is about catching the moment. It's that second or two when something meaningful happens, when the world changes, when emotions hit a crescendo. This photo, despite being an abomination of style, structure and all-around composition, catches one of those moments. Bob Murdoch, who, despite what this cards says, coached the Winnipeg Jets and not the entire National Hockey League, screams up at the owner's box after being handed a stack of walking papers while on the bench with his team during a game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Murdoch is furious, but he doesn't have much of an argument to make. In Winnipeg, wins come second behind handsome neck attire, and the blinding bright-red tie that Murdoch sported every game just couldn't compete with the tricolor, candy-striped gem his soon-to-be replacement wore. His replacement who, as you can see, was already positioned right behind Murdoch, waiting for the moment the coach would be handed his walking papers. How do you like that sportcoat, eh?
Name: Doug Gilmour
Team: Toronto Maple Leafs
Positions: Center, forward (With the ladies, a forward center.)
Value of card: Three bags of dust
Key 1991-92 stat: 136 days playing dress-up
10 explanations for Gilmour being dressed like this, given that the Pinnacle Sidelines series highlights what players do in the offseason:
10) Gilmour appeared in the off-off-off Broadway play "Sticks and Chaps."
9) Gilmour enjoyed eating 3 Musketeers chocolate bars — a little too much.
8) Gilmour, when not playing in the NHL, played for the Novosibirsk Buckaroos of the Russian Federation Hockey League.
7) Gilmour needed an excuse to wear your sister's underpants around his neck.
6) Gilmour, even when not in season, was always looking for a hat trick.
5) Gilmour starred in a spaghetti western — a Chef Boyardee commercial.
4) Gilmour was the star of Toronto's 12th annual Zamboni Rodeo
3) Sambora envy.
2) Gilmour's mullet gained consciousness, took over its host's mind, and started making all the fashion decisions.
1) In Canada in 1992, you didn't need an explanation for dressing like this.
Name: Steve Yzerman
Team: Detroit Red Wings
Value of card: On a scale of 1 to 10, it's 90210
Key 1994-95 stat: Came in last on a lot of roll calls
Break out the Zambonis, eh, hockey season's a-comin': When word spread that the NHL owners and players had reached a labor deal and agreed to play an abbreviated season starting this Saturday, we here at the Bust, like so many other Americans, said, "Hey, wait, hockey was supposed to have started?" Then we realized we could count on one hand the number of hockey cards we've featured, and we decided to fix that. So strap on those skates and fire up your copy of "Slap Shot"
Putting the "why" in Stevie Y: At first, this photo of Steve Yzerman seems like nothing more than an embarrassing, dated collectible, but the more we stared at it
Name: Randal Hill
Team: Miami Dolphins
Position: Wide receiver
Value of card: Two jars of air
Key 1990 stat: 25 lazy afternoons spent lying on the grass, looking up at the sky and thinking, "That one looks like a Dolphin, an underachieving Dolphin."
It's time for another edition of The Caption, which we're told ran in a Miami-area newspaper in 1991: "Wide receiver Randal Hill leaps a tall goal post in a single bound Tuesday on a cloudy day never seen in Miami because the sun is always shining, the neon is always bright and the women are always shimmering in Miami, yes in Miami, while wearing skin-tight Spandex and one-quarter as much shirt as shorts in Miami, yes in Miami, while shamelessly plugging Nike Flight performance cleats in a blatant attempt to get his hands on a preorder pair of the newest Air Jordans, which would mean he got his hands on something at least once this season, in Miami, yes in Miami."
Name: Larry Rothschild
Team: Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Value of card: Grumpiness
Key 2000 stat: Not ready for the new millennium
Fun facts about Larry Rothschild and the Y2K bug:
- The Y2K bug was caused by short-sighted decisions made by computer programmers. Larry Rothschild's short-sighted managerial decisions caused problems for the Rays and their fans.
- As 2000 approached, much preparation went into avoiding a Y2K-related disaster. As 2000 approached, Larry Rothschild's Rays were still a disaster.
- Some people say that the Y2K bug should never have been taken so seriously. We can all agree that no one took Larry Rothschild seriously in this jacket.
- In the end, very few problems were created by the Y2K bug. In the end, very few wins were created by Larry Rothschild.
Name: Wonder Monds
Team: Nebraska Cornhuskers
Position: Defensive back
Value of card: You shouldn't wonder about it
Key 1975 stat: 1 red coat, 1 red tie
Fun facts, some of which we didn't make up, about Wonder Monds:
- During his college years, his afro was the tallest point in Nebraska
- Never actually husked any corn
- His extensive sideburns allowed him to Velcro on his helmet
- Besides Santa, the only man in history to look smooth wearing only red and white
- Had sons named Wonderful Terrific Monds III and Mario. Sorry about that, Mario.
Name: Joe Torre As Player, Joe Torre As Manager
Teams: Milwaukee Braves, New York Mets
Positions: As Player, As Manager
Value of card: Three overexposed negatives
Key 1977 stat: Four letters of childlike cursive written on his own card
It's time for a then-and-now battle in The Matchup:
Round 1: Face only a mother could love (Winner: Tie)
Round 2: Resemblance to
Round 3: Butt chin prominence (Winner: As Player)
Round 4: Raccoon eyes (Winner: As Player)
Round 5: Wings that could fly that massive dome around the world (Winner: As Manager)
Round 6: 2 o'clock shadow like it's 11 o'clock (Winner: Tie)
Round 7: Ability to bench the other if the laws of physics are broken and the space-time continuum ceases to exist (Winner: As Manager)
Score: As Manager 3, As Player 2, Ties 2
Synopsis: Given that this was Joe Torre squaring up against Joe Torre, it's no surprise the battle was close. But in the end, the Hall of Fame manager outshined his younger self with a heaping helping of face and hair handles that just won't quit.
Name: Ted Kluszewski
Team: Cincinnati Redlegs
Position: First base
Value of card: (Kluszewski flexes, then says, "How 'bout this?")
Key 1956 stat: (Kluszewski chops wood, then turns, stares at you, and spits.)
Feast your eyes on a man: Bow down, you pathetic coward. For you are staring at Ted Kluszewski, the manliest of men to ever put on a uniform and tear it to shreds as he flexed. This is the essence of man, the personification of all your fears and self-loathing — and desires. His chin once made Kurt Douglas' chin cry during a chin fight. His forearms were used as models for a sailor named Popeye. His eyebrows' daily sheddings formed herds of Sasquatches. You think those arms are big? You're right, sissy; that bat weighs 78 pounds. His sleeves? They were rightfully frightened and never showed up to the photo session. That last name? It worked as a loan shark's muscle when Kluszewski slept. Bottom line: This guy is such a man, the owners of the Cincinnati Redlegs took one look at Kluszewski's arms and decided the team's name no longer worked.
Name: Bob Stanley
Team: Boston Red Sox
Value of card: Uhhhhhhh ...
Key 1988 stat: No wild pitches in the World Series
Actual conversation between Donruss photographer and Bob Stanley before the above photo was taken:
Donruss photog: "Good afternoon, Mr. Stanley, are you ready to have your photo taken?"
Bob Stanley: "Uhhhhhh ..."
DP: "Um, is that a yes? And you should close your mouth
BS: "Uhhhhhh ..."
DP: "Ohhhh-kay! I'm just gonna go ahead and snap a couple shots. That is your index finger sticking out of your glove, right?"
BS: "Uhhhhh ..."
DP: "Riiiight. Mr. Stanley, are you feeling OK? Do you smell oranges?"
BS: "Uhhhhhh ..."
DP: "ARE YOU HAVING A MEDICAL EMERGENCY? All right, you just stay here. I'll see if I can find the team doctor."
BS: "Uhhhh ..."
Team: New York Mets
Position: Third base
Value of card: $1 off at Dr. Pokey's ColonoscopyMart
Key 1977 stat: One vicious beating
Get a handle on Lenny Randle: What is San Diego Padres first baseman Gene Richards doing to cause Lenny Randle to make that face?
A) Checking for polyps
B) Administering a court-ordered spanking for beating up Frank Lucchesi
C) Just a quick goose
D) Seeing whether the baseball fits
E) Nothing he wasn't asked to do
Name: Bill Fralic
Team: Atlanta Falcons
Value of card: Seven broken, chewed-up, splintering toothpicks
Key 1990 stat: 286 gallons of sweat saved in closet buckets
Conversation between Bill Fralic and a Pro Line photographer, July 23, 1991:
Pro Line photographer: "Hey, Bill. Good to meet ... whoa!"
Bill Fralic (in voice similar to David Puddy's of "Seinfeld" fame: "What's the matter? Never seen a man work out before?"
PLP: "No, no. It's just, um, don't you think you should put on pants for the shoot?"
BF: "Why would I do that? This is how I work out. Pantsless."
PLP: "Um, OK."
BF: "Sans pants."
PLP: "Got it."
BF: "Sin pantalones, amigo."
PLP: "Yeah, I understand."
BF: "Positively without pants."
PLP: "OK, let's just get this shoot over with."
BF: "Sure. Just let me put on my socks."
PLP: "Really? You're going to spread your legs in the air like that? How about I turn around?"
BF: "What's the matter? Never seen a man put on socks before?"
PLP: "Just close your legs, finish pulling up your socks and let's shoot this."
BF: "Hold on. Make sure you get my red Jockeys in the shot. My mother is going to see this."
Name: Jerry Browne
Team: Oakland A's
Value of card: 12 dead ants
Key 1992 stat: 487 fright-filled screams
It's time once again for The Caption, which we're told ran in the Oakland Tribune in 1992: "Jerry Browne, right, who wasn't the past and future governor of California, recoils in fear from an earwig 11 feet from him in the infield grass, while a Red Sox player nearly collapses in laughter and 32,000 fans in the stands make baby-crying sounds and incessantly mock the middle infielder who's afflicted with entomo-aviatophobia — to the lay person, a fear of bugs and things that fly through the air, which, by looking at Browne's career statistics, would include baseballs thrown to a batter."
Name: Ben Gay (yes!)
Position: Running back
Value of card: 6 ounces of analgesic heat rub
Key 2001 stat: 14 hours of clothes hanger tattooing
10 other players signed by the Colts in 2002:
10) Doctor Scholl
9) Paul Mitchell
8) Neo Sporin
7) K.Y. Jelli
6) Barb Asol (cheerleader)
5) Johnson N. Johnson
4) Arman Hammer
3) Icyhot Tigerbalm
2) Pedro Liam Gellie
1) Johnny Ointment
Name: Alex Sanchez
Team: Toronto Blue Jays
Value of card: Nothing good
Key 1989 stats: Four games, three starts, zero wins
Toronto Blue Jays' scouting report on nondescript rookie Alex Sanchez: "Resemblance to A.C. Slater from 'Saved by the Bell' should score us some points with fans who are teenage girls. ... Sure, his last name is Sanchez, but judging by his stuff, he ain't 'dirty.' ... Currently leading our Triple-A team in mullet and steely eyes. ... Hard to find a photo of this guy. All we've got so far is his driver's license photo, but thankfully he's wearing his uniform in it. We may need to buy this guy some actual clothes. ... Needs to work on: (1) curveball; (2) changeup; (3) chin. ... We're all pulling for him in his effort to some day grow facial hair."
Name: Keith Comstock
Team: Las Vegas Stars
Positions: Pitcher, fetal (in about three seconds)
Value of card: A twig and two berries
Key 1988 stat: Glued a baseball to his crotch for a photo shoot
Here's a question for you: What was Keith Comstock saying when this photo was taken?
A) "ARRRRGGGHHH!! Right in the fungo!"
B) "OHHHHHHH!! My giblets!"
C) "OOOOFFFFF!! 'Protective' cup, my ass!"
D) "GUUUUUUUH!! Why did I even bring a glove if I'm not going to use it?"
E) "Las Vegas Stars, 1988 PCL champions, WOOOOO!!"
Names: John Denny, Vern Ruhle
Teams: Philadelphia Phillies, Houston Astros
Positions: Pitcher, one and all
Value of cards: What's 2 x 0?
Key 1982 stats: Zero smiles
Happy New Year: Here at the Bust, we don't often highlight two cards in one post, but when those two cards each feature the classic Topps pose known as "The Pit Stain," we figure they must be ripe for a Matchup.
Round 1: Chins (Winner: Denny
2-0, a shutout!)
Round 2: Sleeve length (Winner: Ruhle)
Round 3: Number of letters in name (Winner: Tie)
Round 4: Number of first names in name (Winner: Denny)
Round 5: Crater face (Winner: Ruhle)
Round 6: Photo taken at the gates of heaven (Winner: Denny, apparently)
Round 7: Wispy facial hair (Winner: Denny)
Round 8: Ability to close mouth completely (Winner: Denny)
Round 9: Ability to look cool while doing this pose (Winner: Tie
nobody has ever managed this)
Final score: Denny 5, Ruhle 2 (Ties: 2)
Synopsis: Denny hits a grand slam (breakfast) and greases the opposition, thanks to his defined jaw line and much-less-defined mustache.