Rest In Peace Vida Blue
Remembering a crazy good pitcher & his 1975 Topps card
They all hurt, but this one hurts more than most. We lost Vida Blue this week. Vida was bigger than life and I remember him well from my youth. First of all, his name...Vida. I remember when he had his first name on the back of his uniform. I remember when Charlie Finley tried to pay him to change his name to "True Blue."
I remember hearing about the good times like 1971 with a 24-8 and a 1.82 ERA. I was a bit young for those. I remember the bad times, Vida and some other players being suspended from baseball due to drug use. I remember the comeback, a 10-10 record with a 3.27 ERA in 1986 before hanging up his cleats.
The baseball card I remember most is his 1975 Topps card. I always loved the green and gold uniforms. I had gold pajamas back around 1973 or so of the "Amazing A's." It's a great looking card from a great looking set. Vida is in the windup though I'm sure he was just standing around pretending to be pitching.
Vida won 209 games and had a lifetime ERA of only 3.27, despite all the issues he had throughout his career. It's pretty amazing. He's not quite a Hall of Famer, but he was certainly a solid "Hall of Very Good" pitcher. It's hard to imagine what he could have accomplished if he hadn't had to deal with all the challenges that came about during his lengthy major league career.
Vida Blue was only 73 years old when he passed away. He will be missed as a true character of the game who for a very short period of time, was a legend! Rest In Peace, Vida!