Wednesday, May 14, 2014

#215 Pat Howell

About the Front: Blue wristband, orange and white gloves. That's some proper team-color coordination.

About the Back: You're looking at Pat Howell's entire major league career, complete with one extra-base hit and one RBI in 79 plate appearances. He grounded into a force play at second base against Danny Jackson, plating Dave Gallagher and giving the Mets a 2-1 fourth-inning lead on August 4, 1992. Heady stuff.

Triple Play:

1. How does a player as offensively challenged as Howell make it to the big leagues? He was incredibly fast in the outfield and on the basepaths. He was an astounding 79-for-90 in stolen base attempts with the Class A Columbia Mets in 1990, despite an anemic .298 on-base percentage.

2. He had three two-hit games in his brief time in the majors. Naturally, one of them came against Greg Maddux.

3. Pat last played in the affiliated minors in 1994, but extended his career another decade by playing in Mexico, Taiwan, and in the independent minors.

11-Year-Old Kevin Says: As a kid, I failed to grasp the gravity of cards like this. If I had known that I was holding Pat Howell's one and only Topps card in my hands, would I have looked upon it with any more reverence? Hmmm...nah.

Bill James Said: Bupkus. Howell hit .209 while spending the whole 1993 season with the Twins' AAA Portland club.

On This Date in 1993: May 14. David Cone and Mark Langston have a nine-inning stalemate, as the Royals and Angels remain knotted 1-1 through regulation. Wally Joyner's bases-loaded walk off of Steve Frey in the top of the tenth gives Cone his first K.C. win after a hard-luck 0-5 start; Jeff Montgomery handles the bottom of the tenth for the save.

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