Friday, September 25, 2009

2011 Topps Archives: Andy Seminick

So when I first started getting names to use for the 2011 Topps Archives Project, a reader threw out Andy Seminick. And my first thought was, "Andy Seminick? Who's Andy Seminick?" And probably right now, unless you're a baseball historian, or a fan of 1940's and 50's baseball, your asking yourself right now, "Andy Seminick? Who's Andy Seminick?" A better question probably would be, "Why Andy Seminick?" Well, it seems that there is a pretty good reason why a player like Mr. Seminick should be in a set like this.

First off all, I need players with cards from the 1950's to balance the number of players from the 80's and 90's that are going to make up the majority of this set.

Secondly, using a player like Andy Seminick forces me to do some actual RESEARCH instead of just going by memory about what kind of player he was.

Andy Seminick was a catcher for the Philadelphia Phillies and Cincinnati Reds in the 1940's and 50's. He made his major league debut in 1943 and had a very productive 15-year career. He was an All-Star in 1949, and was a member of the Whiz Kids, the collective name given to the 1950 Phillies. This team, whose players averaged an age of 26 years old, won the National League pennant and faced the mighty New York Yankees in the World Series. This team included outfielders Richie Ashburn (a 22-year old), Del Ennis (25), infielders Granny Hamner (23), Willie "Puddin' Head" Jones (24), pitchers Robin Roberts (23), Curt Simmons (21) et. al. Seminick was one of the "older players" on this team at 29 years of age in 1950.

During that magical year in 1950, Seminick hit a decent .288 with 24 home runs and 68 rbi's. He finished 14th in the MVP balloting that year. The year before, his all-star year, he also hit 24 home runs and drove home 68 runs. Talk about consistent.

At the end of the 1951 season, Seminick was involved in a seven player trade with the Cincinnati Reds. He played for four seasons with the Reds before being traded BACK to the Phillies in a six player trade.

Now Smoky Burgess was involved in both of these multi-player trades as well, going from the Reds to the Phils and then back to the Reds. And Burgess was included in the 2001 Topps Archives set. So why shouldn't Seminick? Well, that slight is over now as I am going to add Andy Seminick to the 2011 Topps Archives set.

But I have a problem.

You see, the first card of a handful of players in the 2001 Topps Archives set was actually a 1951 Topps Red or Blue Back. However, the Archives set did not utilize the 1951 Topps design, making the player's 1952 card the "first" card of these players. Well, Andy Seminick has a 1951 Topps Red Backs card, as well as a 1952 Topps card. So should I use the 1951 card or the 1952 card?

I will put this up to a vote. Here are pictures of Andy Seminick's Topps cards. The first pair has his 1951 Topps Red Backs card paired with his final Topps card from 1956:

First card: 1951 Topps Red Back #45. Last card: 1956 Topps #296.

Now here is his 1952 card, paired with the 1956 final card:

First card: 1952 Topps #297. Last card: 1956 Topps #296.

So which card should be used as the first card, the 1951 Topps Red Back or the 1952 Topps card?. A poll will come up shortly and by next week, I will add the cards that you the readers choose to the Archives set.

Mr. Seminick passed away in 2004. We pay our respects to one of the original Whiz Kids by adding his cards to the 2011 Topps Archives Project.


JayBee Anama


Matt Runyon said...

For some reason the 1951 Topps Red Back votes aren't being counted. I tried twice to vote for '51 and it kicked me back both times without counting it.

1951 Topps needs some love too. :)

night owl said...

I actually mentioned Andy Seminick in passing in my post yesterday:

TDLindgren said...

I agree that 1951 Topps needs some love as well, but to be consistent with the previous 2001 Topps Archives (which included 1952 Topps and not 1951 Topps cards) my vote went to 1952 Topps. Of course it's up to everyone to decide! :)