Saturday, January 26, 2019

Senators Team Trio #43, #221 & #470

The Team: The 1960 Senators were the last edition of the original franchise in the nation's capital. In 1961 they were the Twins and an expansion Senators team was playing in D.C.

This club had the nucleus of the better Twins' clubs of the mid-60s including Harmon Killebrew,  Zolio Versalles, Earl Battey, Bob Allison, and Camilo Pascual. They were 5th in the AL in the standings and last in attendance.

The back of the card is a marked checklist.

The Manager: Cookie Lavagetto had a ten-year big league career as an infielder with the Pirates and Dodgers. In the middle of his playing days, he served four years in the military during WWII. He was a full-time starter in Brooklyn for the five seasons leading up to his military service and was an NL All-Star for four of them. He managed the Senators through their transition to Minnesota. The '60 finish, fifth place, was his best. I commented on this card, and posted some links to Lavagetto's 1947 World Series notable moment, over on my regular blog. It's near the bottom of that post. Ignore the Facebook stuff, I'm gone from there.

The cartoons on the backs of these manager cards are great as the artists had room to stretch out a bit.

The Coaches: Sam Mele stands out in this group. He had a solid, if unspectacular, ten-year career as a member of the Red Sox and several other AL clubs in the 40s and 50s. He took over for Lavagetto as Twins manager in 1961 and was in the dugout for the 1965 AL pennant.  Bob Swift was a bench player for several clubs for 14 seasons in the 40s and early 50s. He managed the Tigers for two short stints in 1965 and '66. Ellis Clary was a long-time minor league infielder who made the majors for a few seasons during WWII. He spent nearly three decades as a coach and scout for the Nats, Twins, White Sox and  Blue Jays.

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