Orioles Card "O" the Day

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

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Mark Hendrickson, 2009 Topps #378

Six times this season, Mark Hendrickson and Kam Mickolio have both pitched in relief for the Orioles in the same game. Both are 6'9", and I'd have to imagine that they hold some kind of quirky, superficial record for the tallest bullpen tandem in major league history. Hendrickson in particular is quite a sight when he's on the mound, as he's pretty thin and most of his height seems to be in his legs. You may or may not know that Hendo was a pretty good college basketball player at Washington State University. He's the second-best rebounder all-time in Cougar history, a two-time All-Pac-10 first-teamer, and averaged 13.9 points and 8.6 rebounds per game.

The Philadelphia 76ers drafted Mark in the second round (31st overall) in 1997, and he played for four seasons in the NBA with the Sixers, the Nets, the Kings, and the Cavaliers, averaging 3.3 points and 2.8 rebounds per game. Of course, he was scraping by in basketball, so at that point he turned to baseball. Eight seasons in the big leagues later, he's the second-tallest pitcher to ever win 50 career games (the first is that Randy Johnson guy, who stands 6'10"). My favorite story about Hendo is as follows: last season, he pitched with the Marlins. Some of his teammates found a Michael Jordan poster that pictured His Airness dunking over none other than Mark Hendrickson. Needless to say, that poster hung in the Florida clubhouse all season long!

Picture courtesy of The Fightins

Frankly, I give Mark a lot of credit. As others have pointed out, he played at the highest professional level in baseball and basketball. MJ topped out at AA Birmingham during his short-lived try at baseball.


Dinged Corners said...

We knew none of that, and now we know that Hendrickson rocks. Which is one of the reasons that Orioles Card "O" the Day is a necessity of life.

That's a really pleasing card, too.

Kevin said...

Thanks! I like the card, too, even though I think Hendo looks better with the beard. Silly no-facial-hair policy for the Birds.

William said...

I was at the game Sunday and the Rangers got pantsed by the O's. Between Mickolio, Fiorentino, and Andino, I thought maybe I had stumbled into a AAA game somewhere. I've never been to an MLB game with so many no-name players.

Kevin said...

William - It's September, alright.