Upper Deck lost their MLB license in 2010. That did not stop them from releasing one series of cards, but the loss would be felt with a lot of players not getting cards starting in 2010. That left just Topps making baseball cards.
How did this happen? Atchison pitched for the Red Sox for three straight years, appearing in more than 40 games twice. Yet somehow, he never got a card with the Red Sox. Atchison originally came up with the Mariners in 2004 and moved up and down between AAA and the Majors through 2007. He signed a free agent contract with the Red Sox originally in December 2007, but was released and went to pitch for the Hanshin Tigers in Japan for a couple of seasons. He returned to the Red Sox for the 2010 season. He was decent, if not overly impressive, going 2-3 with a 4.50 ERA in 60 innings over 43 games. He struck out 41 and walked 19. He actually started a game against the Phillies in June, throwing three innings in the only game he ever started as a Major Leaguer. You can expect to see Atchison in the next two posts to find out where he went from 2010.
One of the best names in baseball in recent years, Bonser was a prospect for the Giants who was involved in the A.J. Pierzynski trade that brought Francisco Liriano and Joe Nathan to the Twins. Bonser was given multiple chances with the Twins but never managed to develop into the starting pitcher he was projected to be after a fairly impressive rookie season. Bonser was traded to the Red Sox in December 2009 as part of a minor deal. He spent only a short amount of time in the Red Sox organization. He pitched in nine games with the Pawtucket Red Sox and two games in Boston. In those two games, he pitched two innings with an 18.00 ERA, giving up six hits and two walks with no strikeouts. He was released by the Red Sox in June and ended up with the Oakland A's, for whom he appeared in 13 games with a 5.09 ERA. That was his last stint in the Majors.
Cabrera was in his second season with the Red Sox organization in 2010. The big righty spent almost the entire season with Pawtucket as their closer. For the second straight season he saved 22 games for the PawSox, but he had a 4.30 ERA. Cabrera appeared in just one Major League game with the Red Sox and pitched an inning and a third, giving up three earned runs on two hits and two walks with no strikeouts. That was his final appearance in the Major Leagues, though he did pitch in a couple of other organizations. Cabrera does have minor league cards with the Red Sox.
Though he was already with his third Major League organization, Coello made his ML debut with the Red Sox in 2010. He had actually been signed by the Red Sox for the 2009 season, but he spent the entire season in the minors. He spent most of the 2010 season in the minors too, but was impressive enough to receive a late-season call-up. He pitched in six games for the Red Sox with a 4.76 ERA over 5.2 innings. He walked five and struck out five. Coello was traded to the Cubs in a minor deal for Tony Thomas in Spring Training of 2011. He has bounced around ever since, making brief appearances for the Blue Jays and Angels. Coello has never appeared on a Major League card, but he does have some minor league cards with the Red Sox organization.
Fox was originally a first-round draft pick by the Minnesota Twins in 2004, the 35th overall pick. He had a long and winding road to the Majors, finally making it to the Twins for just one game in 2010. He was placed on waivers in September and the Red Sox took a flyer. He pitched in three more games for the Red Sox, giving up two runs in 1.2 innings over three games. He walked one and did not strike out anyone. He spent the entire 2011 season with the Pawtucket Red Sox and had a decent season and was named to the All Star Game. He bounced around after that, but he never appeared in the Majors again. He hung it up after the 2013 season. Fox does appear in Pawtucket sets.
Like Atchison, this one is really annoying. Boston native Hill spent parts of four seasons with the Red Sox. It is a little more understanding in 2010 though. Hill had been a promising southpaw for the Cubs for several years, but could never really be consistent enough to be a full-time starter. He spent the 2009 season in Baltimore before coming to the Red Sox in 2010. Hill was signed by the Red Sox in June of 2010 and was a lefty out of the bullpen for six games for the Red Sox, going 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA. He struck out three, walked one, and gave up five hits. Hill will be in several of these posts, because despite pitching in 44 games for the Red Sox over four seasons, he never had a Boston Red Sox card, though he does have one minor league card with the Red Sox.
The acquisition of Felipe Lopez was an ill-fated attempt at adding a cheap draft pick from the 2011 draft. Lopez was going to be a Type B free agent after the season, meaning that the team that signed him as a free agent had to give up a second round draft pick. Lopez was a slick-fielding shortstop for a number of teams and had some decent decent seasons with the stick as well, including a .291/352/.486 line in 2005 with 23 home runs. He spent most of the 2010 season with the Cardinals, but struggled at the plate and was released in late September for bizarre reasons. Boston scooped him up to try to take advantage of the free agency compensation. He appeared in four games with the Red Sox and hit .267/.313/.467 with a home run and an RBI. He appeared at second, third, and short in his brief time with Boston. Unfortunately, the free agency thing did not work out as Lopez signed a minor league deal with the Rays in February 2011. The fact that it was a minor league deal meant that Boston did not get the compensation.
Yet another pitcher that the Red Sox tried out in 2010, Manuel was originally an undrafted free agent with the Mets. He bounced around several organizations before making his Major League debut in 2009 with the Reds, appearing in three games. Later that year he was traded to the Mariners, then placed on waivers before being selected by the Red Sox in November. He spent most of the 2010 season in Pawtucket and was very impressive, going 8-2 with a 1.68 ERA and 13 saves. He spent a couple of short stints with the Red Sox, going 1-0 with a 4.26 ERA in 12.2 innings over ten games. He struck out five and walked seven. He played for an Independent League team in 2011 before quitting baseball. Manuel does have a minor league card with the Red Sox organization.
After appearing in eight games for the Royals in 2006 at the age of 22, it took Sanchez a few years to make it back to the Majors. Sanchez was signed as a minor league free agent by the Red Sox in November of 2009 and played in just one Major League game with the Red Sox in 2010. He was hitless in three at-bats while playing shortstop. He hit .274 in 62 games with Pawtucket. In July, he was traded to the Astros for catcher Kevin Cash, who was coming to Boston for the second time. Sanchez spent the rest of the season in Houston and actually hit pretty well with a .280/.316/.348 slash line. He also spent the entire 2011 season as a utility man for the Astros. It was his only full season in the Majors. He last appeared in 2013 with the White Sox.
Shealy was a top prospect with the Rockies, showing some big-time power in the minor leagues, including seasons in which he hit 29 home runs in AA and 26 in AAA. Unfortunately he played first base, a position occupied by franchise legend Todd Helton. After a couple of unimpressive stints with Colorado, he was traded to the Royals for Jeremy Affeldt. Over the course of three seasons with the Royals, Shealy played in 123 games and hit 17 home runs. He was very impressive in 2008, hitting seven home runs with a .301 average in 20 games. Shealy signed with the Rays as a free agent in December 2009 and played in the minors until the Red Sox signed him in June. He played in five games with the Red Sox, but was hitless in seven at-bats. He was released by the Red Sox and never appeared in the Majors again.
Only Scott Atchison appeared in more than ten games for the Red Sox, so he is the player I am going with for the player I am most disappointed that he did not receive a card. There were a couple of legitimate Major Leaguers that played for Boston in 2010 that did not get cards, such as Felipe Lopez and Rich Hill, but Lopez only appeared in four games at the very end of the season and Hill pitched in six games. Still, if Quilvio Veras received a card in 2001 when he never played for Boston, Lopez and Hill could have. Still, Atchison is my pick for 2010.