- Official Card Set Name and Card Number: 1988 Topps Traded #92T.
- Player Name, position, team: Jose Rijo, pitcher, Cincinnati Reds.
- Major League Debut: April 5, 1984.
- Last Line of Statistics: 1987 stats (Athletics): 21 G, 82.1 IP, 2-7, 67 R, 54 ER, 67 SO, 41 BB, 14 GS, 1 CG, 0 SHO, 0 SV, 5.90 ERA.
- Any special information about player: Signed with the Yankees as a Free Agent 08/01/1980. Traded by the Athletics to the Reds 12/08/1987. Bats: right. Throws: right.
- Number of regular Topps Cards (includes regular and traded cards only): 17. This is his sixth Topps card.
- Blurb on the back: "Jose led Florida State League with 15 Wins, 1.68 Earned Run Average and 1 Complete Games while tying for lead with 4 SHO at Fort Lauderdale in 1983."
- Commentary: Here is something you may (or may not) have known about the career of Jose Antonio (Abreu) Rijo. On hte day he made his MLB debut, the left fielder for the Yankees was veteran Lou Pinella. It would be only less than six seasons later that the two would reunite, this time with Pinella being the Reds' manager. How is that for trivia. When I was growing up, I liked reading the "This Way to the Clubhouse" blurb on the backs of the 1988 Topps cards (when there was room on the back). If the transaction happened fairly recently, I could get the all the cards of the players involved and make them walk (move them) to their new team. When I was able to buy the traded set, I actually took the base cards and the traded cards and compared the cards of the players with their old teams and then with the new ones. After three seasons with Oakland, the A's sent Rijo and pitcher Tim Birtsas to Cincinnati for outfielder/designated hitter Dave Parker. While the Cobra helped get the A's to the AL pennant (for three straight seasons), Rijo was finally getting acclimated to the Queen City. In his first season with the Reds, Rijo earned a record of 13-8, with an ERA of 2.39 (his career best), struck out 160 batters, and had a WHIP of 1.130. From 1988 through 1995, Rijo would have a record of 92-57, a 2.71 ERA, strikeout 1201 of the 5636 batters he'd face, a WHIP of 1.168, become an All-Star, win 3 games during the 1990 playoffs, including two in the World Series, and be named the 1990 World Series MVP. In 1996, he suffered a serious elbow injury that knocked him out for the entire campaign. Actually, the injury, which required Tommy John surgery, kept him off the field for five full years. He finally made his comeback with the Reds in 2001 as a reliever. After two seasons, his elbow troubles returned, and Rijo finally decided to retire as a player. Funny enough, during his five-years away, he wound up on the 2001 Hall of Fame ballot, and earned a vote out of 515 cast. He was back on the ballot in 2008, and received no votes.
- Beckett value: $0.07-$0.20.
- How many cards of this player do I own?: 23 cards.
Tomorrow's card will be: 2011 Topps #519. Post will arrive at 1:00 PM CST. We're looking back at a card from 2011 here on the blog tomorrow.