Sunday, March 2, 2014

So How Was Your 2001?

I am still sitting here sorting out my 2002 cards.  Maybe another week, maybe less, but I still have a few more sets to sort out.  I ran in to an old favorite last night and decided to throw it into a post this evening.  For one year in 2002 Topps put out the Topps Ten set.  The cards were not overly cool or attractive, but I kind of liked the concept behind the set.  Basically a 200 card set with the top ten players in certain statistical categories.  In case, Topps chose 19 different stats for the first 190 cards and then threw in 10 prospects cards.  Of course, there were some nice autographs and jerseys too.  Here's my look at the 19 statistical categories most surprising member and a prospect card. 

Hits-Rich Aurilia

This guy had a pretty solid career, but was generally a pretty average player except for his 2001 season playing for the Giants.  Sounds good.  

Doubles-Cliff Floyd

Always liked Cliff Floyd, but 2001 was a good year for the former Expos and Marlins star.  More on Cliff later.  

Triples-Juan Uribe

Who would have thought Juan Uribe could run?  

Bret Boone-RBIs

Ummm.  Nothing to see here.

Batting Average-Frank Catalanotto

Guy played 14 years on a lot of different teams, but had a .290 career average with an OBP over .350.  Solid.  

Slugging- Luis Gonzalez

Everyone's favorite fourth outfielder turned mid thirties home run hitter not named Brady Anderson.

Stolen Bases- Mark McLemore

Veteran utility guy.  Decent player, but I do not remember him being this fast.  He only stole 33 bases to get into the Top 10, but still...

Runs-Cliff Floyd

Cliff is all over this set.  He had a great 2001 season with more than 30 home runs, 100 RBIs, and a .317/.390/.578 line for an OPS of .968.  Cliff's OPS+ was 150.  Topps should make a reprint of his rookie card soon.  Purple shorts, paisley shirt, dunking a baseball.  

Stirkeout Ratio Leaders-Fernando Vina

Tough call between Fernando and Placido Polanco.  Vina was good in 2001 for the Cardinals.  

All-Star Votes-John Olerud

The Mariners hosted the All-Star game.  It's important for the hometown fans to stuff the ballot box.  John Olerud being a top ten vote getter is winning when your fans are stuffing the ballot box.  

All-Star Appearances- Barry Larkin

Larkin was no spring chicken when this card was made, but he was already second?  Consider the fact that Ozzie Smith and Barry Larkin's career overlapped from 1986 through 1996, so the NL shortstops were Ozzie and somebody...Not that Ozzie was always deserving, but still.  Good job Barry.  

Rookie of the Year Votes- Shinjo

Shinjo did not actually get a ROY vote, but only nine players received votes.  So, here's Shinjo.

Strikeouts- Hideo Nomo

Good bounce back year for Nomo.  I think he had a couple of them during his career.  

ERA-John Burkett

His pitching style was inspired by his love of bowling.  Seriously.  

Saves- Kaz Sasaki

What happened to this guy?  Where did he go?  Kaz saved 146 games in 4 years and disappeared at age 35.  

Outfield Assists- Jeromy Burnitz

I like Jeromy Burnitz.  Anyone who has that big of a swing is pretty cool.  Apparently he could throw the ball too.

Most Gold Gloves- Larry Walker

Really good defensive outfielder, probably not flying under anyone's radar.  Better than Omar "Broom Closet" Vizquel 

Prospects- Noochie Varner

The ten prospects are all missable, but Noochie is a cool name.  Congrats. 

The Topps Ten set also has some incredibly awesome jersey and autograph cards.


  1. Never knew those existed. Gotta get me some Noochie!

    1. Just bought a 2002 Topps Heritage Noochie on COMC.