#109 Joe Torre
#110 Richie Zisk
#111 Mike Tyson
#112 Houston Astros
#113 Don Carrithers
#114 Paul Blair
Candlestick Marlboro sign sighting #4 on Tyson's card. Zisk is blocking the BRUT sign.
Good: There's nice attention to detail on the back of Torre's card. Instead of saying that he "THROWS: RIGHT" it says he "THREW: RIGHT." I'm sure that in 1978, Torre was still capable of throwing, but Topps is subtly noting that he was no longer a player in 1978, just a manager.
Bad: The Zisk card contains a horrible error in design. Do you know what it is? If not, click here and read about halfway down the page. I wonder how much this oversight hurt Zisk's reputation. Had Topps not made the error, lots of kids might have thought of him as a better player.
Good: Well, hmm, this is another pretty unimpressive group. The Astros team photo is my favorite, just to see all those rainbow jerseys line up into one huge rainbow. They should have hired a guy to dress up like a leprachaun or big pot of gold or something.
Bad: Where do I start with the suck? The Zisk photo is a halfways decent airbrush, except that I would have airbrushed out that ridiculous gold chain in the process. Torre's mouth is hanging open in both photos on his card. Mike Tyson needs so badly to brush his hair. And I know that Paul Blair was black, but his face, hair, and cap are ridiculously dark in this photo. You can barely see anything. Don Carrithers, you get a pass.
I don't understand how Joe Torre won the MVP in 1971. He had a great year, sure, but Willie Stargell and especially Hank Aaron had much better years. Incidentally, his MVP doesn't count below since it's his manager card here. Torre was a player/manager in 1977 but not in 1978.
Zisk is one of just 10 guys to have double-digit homers every season from 1973 to 1983.
Tyson owned John Candelaria, hitting 3 of his 27 career homers against him. First came a go-ahead 2-run homer in May 1976. A few months later came an inside-the-park 3-run homer. Then in July 1977 came a grand slam off the Candy Man. Nice.
Carrithers should have been used exclusively as a reliever. Checking out his splits by role, his ERA was nearly a run and a half better as a reliever. He actually walked more guys than he struck out as a starter and allowed more hits than innings pitched, too.
Blair has one of the most recent seasons with at least 12 triples but no more than 8 stolen bases. I sort of discount Jim Rice's appearances on that list since the Red Sox didn't really run much.
Hall of Famers: 13
Future managers: 10
Fathers and sons of major leaguers: 7
Loyalty counter: 12
Rookies of the Year: 9
Total all-star appearances: 252
(+2 for Zisk, +2 for Blair)
Total MVP awards: 10
Total Cy Young awards: 5