Orioles Card "O" the Day

An intersection of two of my passions: baseball cards and the Baltimore Orioles. Updated daily?

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Paul Blair, 2002 Topps Super Teams #108

One of the things baseball card companies have done right in recent years (and yes, they actually have done a few things right) is to pay more attention to retired players. It's a great opportunity for collectors who are interested in bygone eras to acquire more affordable cards in better condition featuring those names and faces of the past. It also introduces younger generations of fans to baseball history.

I took my father to the Sports Legends Museum this afternoon as a belated birthday present. It's located right next to Oriole Park at Camden Yards and we'd never been, so I thought it was an excellent opportunity to take a closer look at the colorful sports history of Baltimore, and of Maryland at large. We didn't check out the Babe Ruth Birthplace and Museum on this trip; we'd already been there once, and we stayed at the Sports Legends Museum for three hours as it was.

It was a thorough and excellent experience, and I even learned some things that I did not know. For instance, Brooklyn Dodgers heroes Roy Campanella, Joe Black, and Junior Gilliam all played for the Baltimore Elite Giants, one of the great Negro League Teams. Also, O's shortstop Mark Belanger was the first person to suggest that the team play John Denver's "Thank God I'm A Country Boy" during the seventh inning stretch; it's been an Orioles tradition for three decades since! I took several pictures with my cell phone camera, and I'll share some of them with you when I have more time. For tonight, enjoy this retro card with an excellent picture of Paul Blair showing off his Baltimore road jersey in Yankee Stadium.


night owl said...

When I was in Baltimore four years ago, I saw the Sports Legends Museum and wanted to take a tour, but time was limited and my wife wanted to see some non-sports stuff (we had already toured Camden Yards).

I didn't know they still played "Country Boy" at Orioles games! I thought that went the way of Wild Bill!

Kevin said...

Night Owl - They may have phased it out for a while, but it's hanging in there. These days, the Stretch begins with Take Me Out to the Ballgame and continues with "Country Boy". I wouldn't have it any other way.

Costanza's Brother said...

I stopped by the SLM on Saturday while I was visiting family in Baltimore over the Christmas holiday. It is an impressive collection of Baltimore/ Maryland sports history - even my non-fan girlfriend kept herself interested for a couple of hours there.

While the present might be gloomy for the O's at least we can remember the glories of the past.

I highly recommend it to any sports fan who finds themself in Baltimore.