Thanks to the Topps Card Randomizer, introducing the Random Topps Card of the Day for Friday, December 14, 2012:
- Official Card Set Name and Card Number: 1988 Topps #317.
- Player Name, position, team: Tom Nieto, catcher, Minnesota Twins.
- Major League Debut: May 10, 1984.
- Last Line of Statistics: 2001 stats (Angels): 31 G, 170 IP, 5-12, 96 R, 90 ER, 82 SO, 71 BB, 28 GS, 1 CG, 0 SHO, 0 SV, 4.76 ERA.
- Any special information about player: Drafted by the Giants, #15th, June 1989. Signed with the Pirates as a Free Agent 02/09/2002. Bats: right. Throws: right.
- Number of regular Topps Cards (includes regular and traded cards only): 5. This is his fifth and final Topps card.
- Blurb on the back: "Tom recorded 466 Putouts and 58 Assists while leading Texas League catchers with .994 Pct. in 1982."
- Commentary: The first real set that I started collected thanks to those two neighborhood kids in the late 80's, I have a soft spot for the 1988 Topps set. Yes, Topps produced millions and millions of every card. Yes, Donruss, Fleer, and Score were on the market or just starting. Yes, this was the last year before Upper Deck unleashed to the masses their revolutionary card product. But I love how the team name was somehow obstructed by the player, making it appear that the letters were just hanging above the player. It's just a shame that Topps can't seem to get the fonts right whenever they've attempted to reproduce this set. What I'm mostly afraid of is what will happen in 2037 when Topps Heritage finally reaches 1988 for their design. Yikes. Tom Nieto was primarily a guy who was called up by his organization whenever the primary catcher was out. His only season out of the minors was in 1985 when he played backup catcher to Darrel Porter (although he appeared in more games than Porter). In 1988, he started the season with the Twins, splitting time with Tim Laudner behind the plate. However, he was sent to the minors again after May because he was not hitting (at a low .043 after May 22) and made his return to the Twin Cities in September. In 24 games, he hit a resoundingly low .067 (4-60). He was traded to the Phillies after the 1988 season with Tom Herr and Eric Bullock for pitcher Shane Rawley. He was a coach for the Mets in 2008 and returned to the Twins organization in 2010 to manage their AAA team in Rochester. In 2012, he managed the Yankees rookie team in the Gulf Coast League.
- Lo-Hi Beckett value: $0.01-$0.05.
- How many cards of this player do I own?: 6.