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Monday, January 16, 2012

CMC Starting Lineups (More Than I Thought)

A few months ago, while digging around for a gift list I might give my wife for my birthday and for Christmas, I started thinking about the old Starting Lineup figures.

I actually started thinking about it over the summer, when I came across this Curt Schilling McFarlane figure. It's not a Starting Lineup, but it is a CMC set member in plastic form.

Regarding actual Starting Lineups, I have three Andre Dawsons gracing the top of our TV cabinet. They've been up there for a few years now, all three of them ones I still had from my youth. Each represents one of the first three years of the figures, Dawson starting his swing, ending it and running to make a catch.

Related to this blog, I knew there were a few CMC set members who were so honored. There were the big names, like Frank Thomas, Jeff Bagwell and Juan Gonzalez.

But I got to thinking, how many, exactly, were immortalized with their own plastic baseball action figure? And which ones would I ask my wife to get me?

The answer, surprising quite a few, at least a few more than I expected. Looking around online for checklists, I found lists for each year from the first year, 1988, through 1998.

In that span, by my count, a total of 40 different CMC set members had their own Starting Lineup figures.

There were those obvious ones. But there were also the more obscure players, ones that you wouldn't assume would have their own figure.

The first year, in 1988, both Ozzie Virgil and the White Sox' Greg Walker got their own figures. Walker even gone a second one, in 1989, with Mickey Brantley and Pete Stanicek.

Later, Tommy Greene, Scott Cooper, Jeff Manto and even Troy Neel got their own figures.

I was planning on asking for one or two of the more obscure players. But then I stopped by that local card shop. Right there in the dollar bin were Starting Lineups of two of the more well-known CMC set members, Frank Thomas and Juan Gonzalez.

For a dollar apiece, I couldn't ask for any other figures. As I mentioned earlier, I believe it was safe to say that I was the only person in the country to receive a Juan Gonzalez Starting Lineup this past Christmas and was happy to receive it.

Below I've included a full list of the CMC set members and the first or only year they appeared in a Starting Lineup. I've also included links to their features here, if they have been featured already.

1988: Ozzie Virgil, Greg Walker
1989: Mickey Brantley, Pete Stanicek
1990: Ben McDonald
1991: Kevin Maas, David Justice
1992: Juan Gonzalez, Brian McRae, Frank Thomas, Steve Avery
1993: Jeff Bagwell, Travis Fryman, Juan Guzman, Ray Lankford
1994: Derek Bell, Tommy Greene, Chris Hoiles, Darryl Kile, Chuck Knblauch, Orlando Merced, Tim Salmon, Curt Schilling
1995: Moises Alou, Jeff Conine, Scott Cooper, Bob Hamelin, Ryan Klesko, Troy Neel
1996: Vinny Castilla, Wil Cordero, Brian Hunter, Jeff Manto, Edgar Martinez, Denny Neagle
1997: Tino Martinez, Reggie Sanders, Bernie Williams
1998: Mickey Morandini, Ed Sprague

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