Find­ing rare base­ball cards that bring back mem­o­ries

Record Observer - - Opinion -

Daugh­ter June handed me two base­ball cards a few days ago. It has been years since I saw one of th­ese. I used to col­lect them back when I was a teenager, along with a gang of other guys who were base­ball fans around here. But I soon con­cen­trated on stamps and gave my cards away, and th­ese are the first I have seen in years. I wasn’t sure they even made them any­more.

Any­way, they are of Randy Mil­li­gan, a first base­man, who was with the Ori­oles from 1989 to 1992. He played with six ma­jor league teams, start­ing with the N.Y. Mets in 1987 and end­ing up with Mon­treal Ex­pos in 1994.

Ac­cord­ing to the base­ball stats we found on Wikipedia, he is now, or was, a scout for the Ori­oles. They nick­named him “Moose” and is no­table with the Ori­oles as hit­ting the first-ever grand slam in Cam­den Yards.

His over­all sta­tis­tics were not too bad: He had a .261 bat­ting av­er­age; with 70 home runs, and 284 runs bat­ted in with the ma­jors. It was while he played in the In­ter­na­tional League that he won the bat­ting ti­tle in 1989 with a .325 av­er­age and was tops in RBIs with 103.

While with the Ori­oles, his game-win­ning dou­ble that scored Cal Rip­ken on June 17, 1991, is shown in the Os­carnom­i­nated movie “A Few Good Men.” He was 33 when he re­tired from the ma­jors.

Any of my reader-friends still col­lect base­ball cards?

Oh, I for­got to say that he was a pa­tient of my daugh­ter June’s, in the hos­pi­tal a cou­ple years ago, and his wife, Joan, is a nurse at the same hos­pi­tal. Randy au­to­graphed both cards for June.

••• drinks, but all the beer comes out of the taps with­out charge.

It was re­ally a fine day for every­one and I will be out sell­ing those Cash Bash tick­ets again next year.

••• IT WAS A “FLICKER” A faith­ful reader stopped me in the post of­fice the other day to tell me that the red-breasted wood­pecker I saw in our back­yard peck­ing away at the ground was prob­a­bly not a wood­pecker, but a flicker.

He said they are al­most iden­ti­cal to the wood­pecker ex­cept when they fly off, you can see a white tail feather that the wood­pecker does not have. And the flicker pecks in­tently in the ground look­ing for ants, his fa­vorite, my reader-friend told me. He said they are al­ways look­ing for ant hills.

I’m re­ally glad to have so many in­tel­li­gent folks that read this col­umn ev­ery week.

••• TOO COLD FOR

BASE­BALL The Sports Il­lus­trated has a good col­umn on its back page that I turn to be­fore read­ing the is­sue. There was one by Steve Rushin a week or so ago where he asks, “What do you se­cretly like to dis­like in sports?”

I agreed with his an­swer which was that the Ma­jor League Base­ball sea­son opens too soon. It seems to be cold in April with snow many times for some open­ing games.

In fact, I had open­ing day tick­ets thanks to the late Jack Dunn years ago, and we got up to a lit­tle snow on the ground. I thought, “Dog­gone it, I’m go­ing to a base­ball game, not a foot­ball game.”

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