Sunday, December 26, 2010

1967 Topps Fred Valentine

I hope that everyone had a good Dec. 25th. If you celebrate Christmas, I hope that Santa was good to you and your family. If not, I hope that you saw something good at the movies or enjoyed whatever tradition that you've developed over the years.

I don't normally post on Sundays, but I've had enough football and I don't want to go back out to shovel again right now :) So here's a bonus cards for whoever else is hanging around their computers on a holiday weekend.

Who is this? Former Washington Senators and Baltimore Orioles outfielder Fred Valentine
What is this? An autographed card from the 1967 Topps set
Where'd I get it? Nick from Baseball Happenings got it signed for me last month.

Why is this so special? I love the 1967 Topps set. It has a nice, simple design that emphasizes the photos. I'm in the minority, but I prefer the classic posed portrait shots to the standard action photos that dominate modern baseball card sets. This is a great-looking card, and Valentine's careful signature only adds to it.

Valentine played in the major leagues for seven seasons between 1959 and 1968 before finishing his baseball career in Japan.

According to Baseball Reference, Valentine and George Altman were the first players from Tennessee State University to reach the major leagues. (I now have autographs from both, though I did not realize there was a connection between the two until now.) Valentine was also an All-American quarterback for Tennessee State and could have played pro football instead of opting for baseball.

Wikipedia claims that Valentine was nicknamed "Wally the Biscuit Killer," but I don't think I believe them. (If it's true, I'd love to learn the origin of that nickname.)

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