1940 Play Ball #151 Edwin Joost Perhaps not the best player born on this date but it gives me a chance to show off this card (which I do own). Eddie was born in 1916 in San Francisco. He was a 2-time All-Star infielder who played for 17 years (1936-1955). He went 5 for 25 in the 1940 World Series as his team, the Reds beat the Tigers in 7 games. He played for the Philadelphia A's from 1947 to 1954, the best years of his career. He also managed the A's in 1954 to a 51-103 record. Since the A's moved to Kansas City in 1955, Joost was the last (and only 3rd) manager of the Philadelphia A's in their 54-year history. He passed away earlier this year at 94 years of age.
1989 Topps #631 Dave BergmanThere were not a lot of good choices for this date. Dave was born in 1953 in Evanston IL. He was the Yankees #2 draft pick in 1974. He played 1st base and outfield for a number of teams and had a 17-year career, the last 9 years with the Tigers. He was with the Astros when they were defeated by the Phillies in the 1980 NLCS. Baseball is filled with guys like this. He was mainly a platoon left-fielder and defensive replacement for Cecil Fielder. Not a big star but a solid dependable player.
2010 Topps Cards Your Mom Threw Out #20 Thurman MunsonTugboat was born in 1947 in Akron OH. He was the Yankees 1st round draft pick in 1968 and only two years later won the AL Rookie of the Year award. In 11 seasons with the Yankees he was a 6-time All-Star and the AL MVP in 1976. He led the Yankees to World Series wins in 1976, 1977 and 1978. His career was cut short when he died in a plane crash (practicing to land his own plane) in 1979.
1956 Topps #220 Del EnnisDelmer was born in 1925 in Philadelphia. He was signed by his hometown team, the Phillies in 1943 and played 11 of his 14-year career with the Phillies. He was part of the Phillies Whiz Kids team in 1950 which was the first Phillies team to go to the World Series. He hit .311 that year with 31 home runs and a league leading 126 RBIs. After he retired he opened the Del Ennis Bowling Lanes in the Philadelphia suburbs. It was the biggest bowling alley I ever saw.
1983 Topps #205 Dave ParkerCobra was born in 1951 in Grenada, MS. He was drafted by the Pirates in the 14th round of the 1970 draft. He played the first 11 years of his 19-year career with the Pirates. His best years were 1977-1979. In 1977 he lead the league with 215 hits, 44 doubles and a .338 batting average. In 1978, he had a .334 batting average and was the NL MVP. In 1979 he led the Pirates to a World Series win over the Orioles. Back before the league rearrangement, the Pirates were in the NL East with the Phillies. There was quite a cross-state rivalry between the Bucs and the Phils. I don't remember Parker's Cobra nickname but I can still hear Phillies announcer Harry Kallas announcing "Big" Dave Parker. He has remained on the Hall of Fame ballot every year since 1997, but this year was his 15th and last year of eligibility.
1996 Bowman's Best #98 Pokey ReeseCalvin, otherwise known as Pokey, was born in 1973 in Columbia, SC. He was the Reds #1 draft pick in 1991. Known primarily as a defensive player he has a career fielding percentage of .982. In his last season, 2004, he was with the Red Sox when they won their first World Series in 86 years.
2003 Topps 205 #122 Jose ReyesJose was born in 1983 in Villa Gonzalez Dominic Republic. He was a free agent selection by the Mets in 1999. He is in his 9th season with the Mets with a .289 batting average and 351 Stolen bases. Most of those SB were from 2005 to 2008. He lead the league in SB in 2005 (60), 2006 (64) and 2007 (78). He set the Mets all-time steals record on 9/10/08. He was on the disabled list for most of the 2009 season.