Cookie Rojas – 1975 Topps

April 2, 2011

OUT!

It’s hard to see on the scan (you probably can just see the “t” across Cookie’s face) but if you hold it to the light you can see that some young in’ scrawled “out” on the card in red pen. Needless to say if you want to look at a clean photo of this here card, meander over here to Night Owl’s groovy place.

At first, I thought it said cut, and I felt sorry for Cookie. Cookie was a long-time and respected player that the modern statistical analysis is not kind to, but in the day he was regarded as a valuable and versatile. He played at least one inning at every position (including pitcher) and started at six of them. Still, over 83% of his games played in the field and almost 86% of his innings played in the field were at second. He was respected enough to get MVP votes for hitting .276 in 1973 with little power and walks, and was an all-star reserve in 1974.

He certainly deserved better than having “cut” scrawled across his face. Yes, he was cut. Almost all players are cut. Cookie himself was cut after the 1977 season having mentored Frank White for several years. I’ve seen enough altered cards following players around the league, or scrawling their replacements on them, that it wouldn’t have surprised me at all that some kid in Independence, Missouri wrote “cut” on Cookie’s face when he was released.

But I then realized it was “out” not “cut” and then it hit me. Whoever had this card was making their own baseball game using baseball cards. I’m sure that stars like Bench, Morgan, Palmer, Seaver and Jackson had the best results, and guys like Cookie Rojas were used for the various ‘outs’, which is fine. It’s better than being cut.

Even Joe Morgan and Johnny Bench made outs, so Cookie wasn’t alone.

This card will be available in the ‘grab bag’ of extras and odds-and-ends since I have another double of this card without the scrawl. So be prepared!

 

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