I wanted to do a separate post about some of the cards of catchers that I got in my recent acquisition of ’14 A & G. Again, I haven’t opened any packs of this product, I got all of these from my LCS, Collector’s Den, in Wichita Falls, TX.
#219, Evan Gattis
#215, Johnny Bench
#131, Buster Posey
#199, Joe Mauer
#264, Mike Piazza
#155, Yogi Berra
Here are six of the best catchers to have ever played, or are currently playing, and not one of these cards is impressive.
Gattis is shown with his hat on, somewhat squatting down, as if he is playing in the field, which is fitting, as he played more games in the outfield last year than at catcher. However, he is listed as catcher on most of his cards, and it would be nice to see him in his gear, or at least at the plate, not just standing there.
Johnny Bench is arguably the greatest catcher of all-time, though you wouldn’t know it from this awkward picture. The man who changed the position of catcher (he caught with only one hand, as opposed to two) isn’t in his gear. The Hall of Famer, who hit 389 HR’s, isn’t shown swinging a bat. Nope, he is just standing there, with a weird red aura behind his Reds helmet.
At least Buster has a bat; I will give them that. So far, this is the best card of the first row, as he at least has a prop.
Mauer, while no longer catching, is still considered by me to be a catcher, so I include him. His card is a little better than Posey’s card as he has at least taken a swing with his bat. I don’t understand the choices being made with these images.
Aha! Finally an image that may possibly be taken from a game or similar situation. This is almost an action shot. Piazza is in his Mets jersey, so double points for this card. His defense was never great, so showing him batting is fine by me.
If it weren’t for Johnny Bench, Yogi would be considered the greatest catcher of all-time. So Topps decided to show him at least poised to swing, which is a plus. I would like to have seen him in his catcher’s gear, or possibly showing off some of his awards or rings.
It’s funny, but my favorite card of a catcher is that of Jason Castro, not one of these six superstars
#251, Jason Castro
Castro is not a player that I avidly collect. I respect his abilities and understand that injuries have kept him from a lot of games. But when I saw this card I decided to scoop it up. Shown in his gear, Castro gets more points for wearing the traditional catcher’s helmet. I love the Astros’ uniform and it goes well with the blue background. This is the best I can expect from a set like A & G. Thankfully, it has only one series, and not three like the flagship product.