Thursday, January 21, 2010

1979 TCMA Columbus Clippers #5, Garry Smith

Between 1976 and 1981, the Yankees won 100+ games 3 times, the AL East 4 times, and the World Series twice. Most accuse them of buying players and titles, yet their AAA farm team also excelled, providing a steady stream of surrounding talent for their free agent acquisitions.

  • 1976 Syracuse Chiefs: IL champs
  • 1978 Tacoma Yankees: PCL co-champs
  • 1979 Columbus Clippers: IL champs
  • 1980 Columbus Clippers: IL champs
  • 1981 Columbus Clippers: IL champs




Card front



Card back


In 1978, Yankee farmhand Garry had his finest season. He played everyday (116 games), registered a .419 OBP, and set career highs in hits and RBI. (Full minor league stats.) For all the winning and periodic good play from Smith, the parent club never rewarded him with a call to the majors. It's likely a crowded New York outfield made it almost impossible to break through; Lou Piniella, Mickey Rivers, and Reggie Jackson manned those spots in 1979, with vets Oscar Gamble, Bobby Murcer, and Roy White backing them up.


Value: I bought this #5 on eBay for $1, about what you'd expect to pay for minor league singles.

Fakes / Reprints: People have probably reprinted valuable minor league league cards of big MLB stars, but I don't know of any for commons.

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