I saw the checklist for the 2013 Topps Archives set I knew I had to pick up a Delino DeShields autograph. He's never had a certified autograph before this card and honestly he is such an interesting person to so many different fan bases. Why would you not want a Delino DeShields autograph? Maybe if your a Dodgers fan you could live without the memories of Delino DeShields. So, besides having a cool name let's look at the card and some different motivations for owning an autograph of this former Major League second baseman.
2013 Topps Archives Delino DeShields Autograph
Montreal Expos Fans- I am always surprised at how many people collect Expos cards. It's surprising that there are several out there, but I will admit, they are really cool cards to look at. DeShields started his career north of the border with the Expos in the early 90s when they were bringing up players like Larry Walker, Marquis Grissom, and Wil Cordero. Throw in a few nice veterans like Dennis Martinez and you have got a good team. Of course, the best reason for loving DeShields is the fact that the team traded him to the Dodgers for a young Pedro Martinez.
Los Angeles Dodgers Fans- Read the last sentence of the Expos paragraph. Let that soak in. Every team has their bad trade. This is the Dodgers. Batting average under .250, OBP under .330, and an OPS under .700. Yikes!
St. Louis Cardinals Fans-My reason for getting this autograph is that he actually put on the Birds on the Bat for a game. Of course, while DeShields played terribly for the Dodgers he had two great years for the Cardinals. Batting average in the .290s, OBP in the .360s, and an OPS over .800. Add in the fact that he spent a year and half of his time in St. Louis getting on base in front of Mark McGwire. Add all of that up and this is a pretty good card for any Cardinals collector. Although I question him having the first five seconds of an En Vogue song played as his at-bat music for two years straight. It still ranks as the all-time worst at-bat song in Cardinals history.
Baltimore Orioles Fans- As a resident of the middle Atlantic region I run into many Orioles fans in these parts. I am often told the tale of their terrible owner. First, he signed free agents that did not work out. Then he went cheap. DeShields was a free agent that did not work out. In three seasons with the Orioles he played well for one season where the Orioles were terrible and was injured and below average the other two seasons. Coincidently, the Orioles were terrible the two seasons that DeShields played poorly. Orioles fans do not like to hear that.
Chicago Cubs Fans-How do these types of players usually work out for the Cubs? This was not any different. DeShields was somewhere around the player that he was on the Dodgers and Orioles. Not good.
Summary-DeShields was a solid Major League player who is remembered by many fans for having a cool name, wearing a double flapped batting helmet, and having terrible at-bat music (I am not letting it go). If you were an Expos fans and Cardinals fan you probably remember DeShields helping out your teams with some good solid second base play for several seasons. Throw in decent defense, a few stolen bases, and a Pedro Martinez trade. Cubs, Orioles, and Dodgers fans....not so much.
Besides being a former Major League Baseball player, Delino DeShields also has extremely talented children. Even if one of them is a Tar Heel.