08 May 2010

Mr. May No More!

1993 Blue Jays Donruss World Series Highlights #WS7

&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp In the 1980-81 off season, George Steinbrenner signed up, to play left field for the New York Yankees, the biggest free agent on the market to the biggest deal in history. At the time, it was reported as $10M for 10 years (though it would become apparent later, that The Boss apparently didn't actually read the complex, clause-laden contract and would end up being more like $23M). Incidentally $10M is about the same price Steinbrenner bought the entire (last place) New York Yankees franchise for in 1973. A whopping ONE million dollars a year secured one of the best (and certainly biggest...I mean look at how he towers everyone else in the photo!) all-around players in baseball, one David Mark Winfield.

&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp Naturally, for $1M+ a year, Steinbrenner expected immediate results. However, in the weird, strike-interrupted 1981 season, Winfield would not live up to those expectations. Big Dave got off to a pretty good start, but after nearly a two month mid-season hiatus, he never got his rhythm back when the season resumed. Winfield did bat .350 in the '81 division series, but then went a combined 3 for 35 in the ALCS & World Series, with no home runs. And unfortunately, that lack of performance, and the failure of the Yankees to return to the post-season over the next 4 years, resulted in Steinbrenner, after the team narrowly missed making the post-season in 1985, labeling Winfield as "Mr. May" since it seemed his best hitting came early in the season when it mattered the least, unlike "Mr. October" Reggie Jackson, who is best known for his World Series heroics.

&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp In the next 5 years, the Yankees still wouldn't make the post-season, and Winfield would be traded to the Angels, and then move on to the Blue Jays. It was with the Blue Jays, in 1992, that Winfield would shed that unfortunate moniker with a game-winning double in Game 6 of the 1992 World Series.

&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp Been looking for this card for a very long time and this past week someone posted each card from the set on eBay. Score!

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