In this series, I look at my first team set: 1991 Topps. This was the set I started my baseball card collection with.
I have always liked catchers. I was aware that Tony Pena was the Red Sox catcher coming off of the 1990 season. I previously had one card of Pena, a 1990 Topps Big card. This is the first card of Pena that I got that featured him in his catcher's gear.
Pena had been an All Star catcher and Gold Glove winner for the Pirates and Cardinals before joining the Red Sox as a free agent. He actually received some MVP votes in 1990, finishing 21st in the balloting. It was his intangibles, his veteran leadership, and his ability behind the plate that helped the team the most and got him his recognition in the MVP vote. He only hit .263/.322/.348 with seven home runs and 56 RBIs in 1990, not bad numbers for a catcher, but not particularly good either.
Pena would win the Gold Glove award in 1991, the second Red Sox catcher to do so.
I do like this card quite a bit. Mostly because of the catchers' gear, but it appears this is after a play at the plate or a wild pitch. There is some dust that has been kicked up and Pena looks pretty intense.