Classic card of the week

John Franco & Bobby Thigpen, 1990 Fleer

I want to point out that here it appears as though John Franco is smelling a nasty fart, and that Bobby Thigpen is trying to be sly about having dealt it. Franco’s “Who farted?” face pales in comparison with the greatest one, but still, I commend it. And Thigpen? You’re nasty. It smells like you ate a day-old egg and sulfur sandwich. Get a hold of yourself, man.

Enough with the fart observations though. I can do other things.

Relievers Bobby Thigpen and John Franco had one thing in common in 1990,

They were relievers? They were the TOP GAME SAVERS as you pointed out on the front of the card? They played baseball? They enjoyed “Cats?”

but it’s likely neither one was thrilled about it.

Hmmm, this is getting tricky now. Let’s see … they both had bouts of diarrhea? They enjoyed “Cats?” I am stumped.

Thigpen, the American League save leader, and Franco, tops in the National League, wound up on teams that finished second in their respective divisions.

Man, that is the dumbest lede on the back of a baseball card that I have read all morning. That they both pitched for second place teams should be a side-note on a card paying them homage for their skills at acquiring lots of a dumb statistic, not the introduction. Also, you can do a lot worse than second place. It’s all relative. In college, I once placed second in some drunken cross-dressing beauty pageant event whereby I dressed like Britney Spears and danced on stage by thrusting my groin in the direction of a crowd that included at least some faculty, and I was thrilled. So let’s not go making assumptions.

(By the way, unfortunately, that story is absolutely true. The guy who came in first place swept the talent portion of the event by gracefully roller-blading through the crowd while dressed like an ice skater. It was pretty amazing, actually. My subsequent efforts reeked of desperation.)

Thigpen helped the Chicago White Sox to the third-best record in baseball by notching a Major-League record 57 saves. Bobby shattered the previous mark of 46 established by Dave Righetti in 1986. In fact, Thigpen and Oakland’s Dennis Eckersley (48 saves) both broke the mark. Righetti placed fifth in the AL in 1990 with 36 saves.

Even for a dumb stat, 57 saves is a lot of saves. Way to go, Bobby! How about you, John?

… Franco captured the save title, 33-31, over Myers.

Thirty-three saves? Wow, that is … only 24 saves less than your co-champion over there. If saves could be converted into public shame, that is the roughly the difference between 1st and 2nd place in the aforementioned college beauty pageant. And now that I think about it, that may be less of “Who farted?” face on Franco than a “How did I get here?” face, with Thigpen being like, “Pfftt. Yeah, how did you get here, dude? Also, I farted.”

Thigpen’s mark would be broken by Francisco Rodriguez, who Franco’s Mets later deftly acquired, and who paid back the organization by assaulting his would-be-father-in-law at Citi Field. You see, it all comes full circle … ?

So today we covered farts, diarrhea, cross-dressing beauty pageants, and would-be-father-in-law physical assault. Next week we will cover other, different things. Who knows, maybe even baseball. Hope to see you here!