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Monday, October 25, 2010

1981 Fleer: CMC Jackpot

As I mentioned earlier, the 1981 Fleer set obviously came out nine years before my CMC set. But there are players from the 1981 set in the CMC set, either still as players or as coaches.

I'm not sure exactly how many, I tried to figure that out, but got bored quickly. But there there, trust me. In my first two packs of 1981 Fleer I picked up in Cooperstown, I struck out completely, having to rely on checklists or derivative CMC connections.

This third and final pack, however, fittingly was last. There were not one, but two, count them, two direct CMC set members in this pack. That's them up top. Aurelio Rodriguez and Harry Spilman.

I featured Spilman back in June, actually just before Manny Ramirez' return to Fenway. That was fitting because Spilman was right there at the beginning for Ramirez, getting young Manny to call his mom.

That's the 1981 and 1990 Spilmans side-by-side. Those observant enough to notice might see an extra 'l' on Spilman's CMC card. That was CMC's mistake, not the only spelling error in the set.

As far as Rodriguez, I have yet to feature him. A quick preview for sometime in the future: Rodriguez played 17 years in the majors as a player, his last year in 1983. He started 1990 as a coach on the Toledo Mud Hens. The side-by-side CMC and Fleer cards are there. But he soon left Toledo with the start of the New York-Penn league in June, managing the Niagara Falls Rapids.

Elsewhere in this cool pack was the guy right there, who was just all over the place. That's Bob Cox, manager of the Braves in 1981 and manager of the Braves in 2010. Actually, the back of his card uses his more familiar first name, Bobby. But on the front, Bob it is.

Cox would also be the only Hall of Famer in the pack. Garvey there didn't make the baseball Hall, the closest he got was north of 40 percent in his first try. But, according to Wikipedia, Garvey is a member of two other Halls of Fame, the Michigan State Athletics hall and the Irish American Hall.

One of these last two is a player I pointed out recently, yesterday in fact. That's Gary Lucas. I just got his 1985 Topps card in that pack and the very next pack, from four years earlier, I got him again. That's after I'd already gotten a card of his autographed back in the 90s and was at a game that he was at just this past season.

Lucas was coaching then for Beloit of the Midwest League, at Burlington. Also in the Midwest League this past season, as well. That's John Tamargo. He has enjoyed a long coaching career after his playing days ended. This past year, he managed the Clinton LumberKings, a team we considered seeing this past year before deciding on Burlington.

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