Today is Alois Leiter's birthday. Before today I had never know him as anything other than just Al, just like it says on the front of his 1988 Donruss rookie card.
Today I found out that his first given name is Alois, thanks to the back of that same 1988 Donruss card.
Al is a two time all-star which is impressive, but he's a three time World Series Champion; twice with the Blue Jays and once with the Marlins.
Leiter spent his first few seasons as a Yankee...
...before being traded to the Blue Jays. He spent 6 seasons with the Blue Jays, which included back to back World Series titles, so I was surprised to find that I only have one card featuring Leiter as a Blue Jay...
...and the one card I have is a 1996 score card, which was printed after Al was already a member of the Florida Marlins. He pitched two seasons for the Marlins. In 1996 he threw a no-hitter against the Colorado Rockies and in 1997 he helped the Marlins win a World Series.
I picked up this autograph a few years back. I've always liked the simplicity of the early Leaf Signature cards and I love that his entire signature is legible.
After winning the World Series, the Marlins traded away all of their high priced players and as a result Leiter ended up with the Mets and spent the next 6 seasons in New York.
The majority of my Leiter cards are from his time with the Mets. Check out his signature on the side of this 1999 Bowman card. He signed it Alois T. Leiter.
Leiter rejoined the Marlins after the 2004 season and spent part of the 2005 season in Miami before being designated for assignment and being picked up by the Yankees. I don't have any cards of his season and a half with the Yankees.
Today is Jim Bunning's 85th birthday. I hope he has a great day, not just because it's his birthday, but because he recently suffered a stroke.
Bunning had a tremendous baseball career that spanned from 1955 - 1971. The 9 time all-star pitched both a no-hitter and a perfect game. The perfect game came on Father's Day 1964 with his seven children cheering him on. When he retired from the game, Bunning had the second most career strikeouts with 2,855, only behind the great Walter Johnson.
After his baseball career ended, he entered politics eventually serving as both a member of the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate for his home state of Kentucky.
Bunning was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame by the Veteran's Committee in 1996.
Bunning pitched for the Tigers, Phillies, Pirates, and Dodgers during his career, but spent the majority of his career with Detroit and Philadelphia. I don't have any cards of Bunning from his playing days. I only have four cards total. These two ...