When I first heard of the signing of Omar Vizquel by the Blue Jays last night, my immediate thought was “Oh boy, brace yourself for the tidal wave of old man jokes on your twitter feed”.
My second thought was, oh shit I think I actually have an Omar Vizquel card. Of all the cards I have in my possession ranging from the years 1987-1993, there are probably 3-4 players still playing today, Vizquel being one of them. Jamie Moyer, Tim Wakefield and possibly Darren Oliver being the others. I’ll have to go through them all and maybe do a post of cards that I have of players that are still playing today.
This Omar Vizquel card is a 1992 Upper Deck. Just like the Upper Deck baseball trading card company, 1989 was the first year Omar Vizquel and Upper Deck made its Major League Baseball debut.
The then 25 year old Vizquel, rounding second base making his way to third shows a gritty, scrappy, gutsy, spunky, spirited (which I’m sure all of these adjectives will be used by Blue Jays broadcasters and writers if he makes the team) young looking Vizquel.
The back of the card shows a very brutish, modelesque looking Vizquel which looks like it could have adorned the pages of GQ magazine back in the day. This photo was taken after Vizquel just struck out and a fan is yelling at him “You’re a bum Vizquel. You’ll be outta this league in 2 years”. He looks back with that menacing glare, lasering in on that fan saying nothing. He doesn’t have to say anything because that glare says it all “Oh yah you piece of shit, I’ll show you. Just for that comment I’m going to stick around and play in the majors for the next 20 years. Suck on that.” (In my mind, Omar Vizquel is saying all this in a Tony Montoya voice, a-la Scarface).
Not sure what defensive stats Upper Deck was using back in 1992, but the little blurb on the back of the card states that, even though Vizquel just finished his 3rd season as a major leaguer (and not a full 3 seasons as he only played 143, 81 & 142 games respectively) he was the third highest rated fielding SS in the A.L. in 1991 behind Cal Ripken Jr. and Greg Gagne.