Thursday, May 6, 2010

Cards That Never Were #23

1993 Topps Traded - Dale Murphy

The last few years of Dale Murphy's career weren't exactly the stuff of Hall of Fame candidates. Marred by injuries, he latched onto the newly formed Colorado Rockies in 1993. Unfortunately, the change to Colorado didn't revive his career and he retired in May 1993.

This far removed from his playing days, most people don't even realize that Dale played with the Rockies to finish out his career. Once a sure fire Hall of Fame candidate, Murphy's skills and playing time decreased after his first full year in Philadelphia.

Due to these factors, Dale likely didn't merit a final card in the traded set. It just goes to show that sometimes, no matter how beloved a player is and how much of a star he was, if they aren't doing much, they won't get the cardboard love.

A career worst .143 average an no home runs did not make his case a good one for card inclusion. Couple that with a retirement in May and it spelled doom even for a player with Dale's career caliber, which included over 2,000 hits and 398 home runs. It should be noted that Dale did get a few cards of him on the Rockies with a few mid-season releases which were already in production and/or shipped by the time he retired.

11 comments:

The Chop Keeper said...

As a kid growing up (and a big Braves fan), Murphy was my favorite player- and this is a sweet card that never was that you made. Watching Dale towards the end of his career was painful, and with the steroid-era guys being questionable HOFers, hpefully Murph will one day get elected. Anyways, keep up the good work!

thewritersjourney said...

I am a firm believer that Dale Murphy should be in the Hall of Fame.

White Sox Cards said...

I used to love to watch Dale on TBS in the 80s. As one of the "clean" players, I believe he has a strong case for enshrinement. He also knew when to hang it up too.

The Wax Wombat said...

Wow, I did not know he was on the Rockies. Hmf. Learn something new every day thanks to blogs like yours.

madding said...

He does have a Rockies 1993 Upper Deck card.

White Sox Cards said...

That he does. Surprisingly Upper Deck seemed to be the only company to recognize Dale Murphy with a Rockies card that wasn't already to press when he retired.

Hayden said...

Dale Murphy was easily my favorite player when I was growing up. In my baseball card book, the opening dozen pages were devoted solely to his cards (though I never obtained his rookie card).

Around 88/89, I had a cousin who played for the San Francisco Giants. So, my mother drove me and a friend nearly 400 miles so that I could meet my relative as well as see Dale Murphy play at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium.

After the game, my mother wanted to give me the chance to also meet my boyhood hero. So, we took a random elevator down to the ground level, which dropped us right outside the Braves locker room. As we waited for the players to emerge, my mother started a conversation with a woman with 5 stacked plates of food. After a while, the woman introduced herself as Murphy's wife. When Murphy came out, I got to meet him and get him to sign his autobiography, Murph. Great guy.

White Sox Cards said...

Great story! Thanks for sharing.

The Chop Keeper said...

Fleer and Score also put Murphy in their 1993 Ultra and Pinnacle sets. The Pinnacle one- an insert set entitled "Cooperstown Card"- is one of my favorites. I've put some pictures of them up on my blog.

The Chop Keeper said...

It's kind of tough to tell exactly, but it looks like the photo you used on this card was taken as they were playing the Braves?

White Sox Cards said...

I saw those other Rockies cards of Dale during the research phase. The idea of Dale playing against the Braves crossed my mind too, as it does look like Atlanta uniforms. If that's the case, this picture was taken during Dale's pinch hit at-bat for Alex Cole, in the bottom of the ninth on May 8, 1993. Dale struck out.

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