Monday, March 2, 2009

#53 & 54 -- Bud Harrelson & "In Action"

Bud Harrelson

Derrel Harrelson (good thing somebody that cared about him slapped "Bud" on him...Derrel's a good name, but that rhyming might not have worked out so well) was born on June 6, 1944. That was a hell of a day to be born.

Imagine that. You're having your 10th birthday party, a pretty big deal, and all anyone is talking about is the 10th anniversary of the Normandy Invasion. I suppose we now know why he was named Derrel, but he just as well could have been David, Donald or Daniel, when your birthday is also D-Day.

Bud always had spunk and fight in him. He went all of 5'11" and 160, but he didn't back down from anybody. Just ask Pete Rose. Bud couldn't hit his way out of a wet paper bag, but he could play the field well enough to stay in the lineup. In fact, about the only thing that could keep him out of the lineup was National Guard duty. Yes, there was actually a time when ballplayers missed time for summer Guard camp. During the season, even. And Bud missed time in 1969 when he won a World Series ring. But then again, wouldn't you expect this from a guy born on D-Day?

The "action" card here is great. It's not got much to do with Bud, though, although he's nicely slapped a ball out there. I think that's an Atlanta Braves' catcher, which would make it either Earl Williams or Hal King. I'm going to narrow this down to Earl Williams on Saturday, July 3, 1971. I'll pick that over May 22, just because the crowd is more shirtsleeves. I don't know if you can make it out, but there's a gal with some bug-eyed sunglasses in the front row on the left side of the dugout looking down to get a bite of something. Just behind her there's a long-haired hippie with a tan Gilligan hat on. (You may have to click on the card and then zoom in to see them.) Looks like an episode of Life on Mars. If only No Nuts Norris were sitting back there.....

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