Tuesday, May 19, 2009

#82 Braves Rookie Stars: Santos Alomar and John Braun

#82 Braves Rookie Stars: Santos Alomar and John Braun
So I go a week in between updates, and my penance is back-to-back two-player rookie cards. That seems fair. This particular card seems to be about the extreme closeup; the photographer is zoomed in so far on Santos Alomar (whom you might know as Sandy Alomar, Sr.), we can see the tag on the back of his jersey. Meanwhile, we can practically count the hairs in John Braun's sideburn there.

Fun facts about Sandy Alomar:

-Hailing from Salinas, Puerto Rico, was just sixteen when he signed with the Braves in 1960.

-His brothers Rafael, Demetrio, and Antonio all played in the minors.

-Debuted in Milwaukee in 1964, and stroked an RBI single off of Ray Sadecki in his first at-bat.

-Did not stick in the big leagues until 1968, when he was with his fourth team: the White Sox.

-Played in 648 consecutive games between 1969 and 1973, the years in which he was the Angels' starting second baseman.

-Not known for his strength as a hitter, his best year with the bat was 1971: .260 AVG, 24 2B, 4 HR, 42 RBI, 39 SB (he stole 20 or more bases seven times).

-Played every infield position and the outfield corners in his career, but earned kudos for his defensive range and positioning at second base. Led the American League with a .985 fielding percentage at the keystone in 1975.

-A great bit of trivia from Wikipedia: On July 3, 1970, Sandy turned a double play for the final two outs of Clyde Wright's no-hit victory against Oakland. The batter was Felipe Alou. Alomar, Wright, and Alou all had offspring who became major leaguers. What's more, Sandy Alomar, Jr., Jaret Wright, and Moises Alou all played in the 1997 World Series. Of course, as an Orioles fan, I will never forget the absence of the younger Alomar brother in that particular Fall Classic!

-Among the three Alomars, they totaled 5,128 hits in parts of 52 seasons. Not too shabby.

-Sandy is currently the bench coach for the Mets. He's also coached for the Cubs, Rockies, and Padres, and has managed in both Puerto Rico and stateside in the minors.

Fun facts about John Braun:

-Was born on Boxing Day, 1939 in Madison, WI and signed with the hometown Braves in 1960.

-Won 10 games with a 2.90 ERA in his first professional season, but his best performance came in A-ball in 1963: 7-3 with a 1.43 ERA as a reliever.

-The Braves gave him a look at the end of the 1964 season. In his only major league appearance, he pitched two scoreless innings of relief against the Pirates and struck out Roberto Clemente looking.

-He pitched only four games at AA Austin in 1965 before his career apparently ended at age 25.

-Is one of four Brauns in big league history. The others are outfielder-third baseman Steve, reliever Ryan Zachary, and slugger Ryan Joseph. No relation.
#82 Braves Rookie Stars: Santos Alomar and John Braun (back)


  1. Omir Santos, hard hitting minor league call up for the Mets, and now this card have reminded me of yet another classic Simpsons reference (which seems to be my motif here of late):

    Oh, pardon me, Santos - if that is your real name, Bart Simpson - but your phony credit card is no good here. Now make like my pants and split.

    No one seems to get it when I shout "pardon me, santos" every time he comes to bat. I'm not crazy everyone! I'M NOT CRAZY!!!! (cue suicidal tendencies)

    I shouldn't post at 4:40 am with no sleep whatsoever...

  2. "Please don't bang your head on that display case! It contains a very rare Mary Worth, in which she has advised a friend to commit suicide!"

  3. love these posts. makes me cherish my 65s more. thanks

  4. Do you have a 1973 Carl Yastrzemski, when he had big side burns?

  5. Scott - Thanks for the kind words!

    Max - Sadly, no. I've got a '79 where they're short, but thick. I pulled that one from the oldest pack I've ever bought, about six years back. Also got a Jim Palmer!

  6. I have this card in great shape signed by both Sandy and John.