Wednesday, March 21, 2012
no. 29 - don buford
Who is the man: Don Buford was entering his second-to-last season with the defending World Champion Baltimore Orioles as this card hit store packs. He led the league with 99 runs scored in 1970, the third straight year he had scored exactly 99 runs.
Can ya dig it: Buford's slightly concerned expression is alleviated by the fun cartoon Oriole on his cap and the way Topps bunched Buford's signature in the corner.
Right on: Buford achieved several notables in his career. He was the first Oriole to hit a home run from both sides of the plate in the same game. He was the first player to lead off a World Series game with a home run, doing so against Tom Seaver in the 1969 Series.
You see this cat Buford is a bad mother: Buford holds the record for lowest rate of grounding into double plays. He grounded into just 34 double plays in his 10-year career, averaging one every 138 at-bats.
Shut your mouth: Burford suddenly struggled with Baltimore in 1972. The Orioles sold him to the Fukuoka Lions in Japan. He made it work for him though, as he was labeled "The Greatest Leadoff Man in the World" by the Japanese media and he played there until 1976.
No one understand him but his woman: I'm sure he muttered that once or twice while in Japan.
(A word about the back): Buford looks a lot younger on the back of the card than the front.