Jerry Dybzinski – 1984 Topps

June 29, 2012

Where Have The Deep Cuts Players Gone?

On my way home from work, ye olde Ipodde threw on “Dirty Little Girl” by Elton John for my ears. Now, you may not be familiar with that track. Heck, I had really forgotten about it. The song wasn’t a single; not even a B-side. It was side 3, track 3 of “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road”.

A true deep cut. A true sign that the artist and / or album was truly someone / something of quality and distinction.

Do we really have those in music anymore? And does anyone miss them?

My posse in high school loved the Cars. They loved the hits, but they loved the deep cuts more. How many people can quote”Down Boys” or “You Wear Those Eyes”? Our group could. But in this epoch of single track purchasing and alternate methods of recording procurement, do deep cuts matter? Are they relevant?

Same with baseball cards. Do we really have deep cuts anymore?

It used to be that every set had bunches of guys like Mr. Dybzinski. The scrubs. The fill-ins. The dreaded utility guys. You needed them.

Now part of it may be the way baseball rosters are inanely cobbled together now. It used to be you had 15 players and 10 pitchers (sometimes 16 and nine). Then it went to 14 and 11 and that seemed sensible.

But now we’re at 13 players and 12 pitchers and some idiotic teams go for 12 and 13. And those pitchers are usually on a conveyor belt between the majors and the minors. The transaction pages are filled with players being DFAd and being called up.

The 1973 San Diego Padres (60-102) used 12 pitchers all freaking season, and two of those (Bob Miller and the wonderfully monikered Frank Snook) pitched in 18 games each and another (Fred Norman) was traded halfway through the season to the Reds. The other nine guys carried the load, and lost a shit-ton of games.

This year’s version of the Padres have already used 26 pitchers. Yes, 26. Twenty. Six. Pitchers.

With all of these pitchers yo-yoing up and down and the short short benches, there aren’t a lot of scrubs around.

Coupled that with the limited amount of cards in the base set (660 for 30 teams) and it’s no wonder that the Topps releases seem like stars, pitchers, and prospects and that’s it.

No room for the Dybzinksi’s of the world.

I think that’s a sad thing, actually. Not every card has to be a star or could-be-star. You gotta have the regular folks and the ones on the margins to represent a baseball ecosystem. Just like in music you need the singles and the deep cuts.

At least I think so.

Oh, well, time to look for my Dybzinski’s and listen to some deep cuts. Rock and roll and all that.

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