Saturday, June 4, 2022

Cards That Never Were: Jim Lyttle Topps 1973 and '75-77

Cards That Never Were is a recurring series in which I create virtual trading cards for players missed in various sets. It is a concept I have borrowed from far too many to list, but I appreciate all of their efforts.

Today, I planned on creating missing cards for former baseball player Jim Lyttle. Instead, I found all of his missing cards already done expertly by a couple folks I have previously mentioned here.

Custom Baseball Cards is a fantastic Facebook group in which people post hundreds of card (not just baseball) creations. Lynn is a moderator and has produced hundreds of cards, including several at my request.

When Topps Had (Bse)Balls is a site dedicated to creating "Cards That Never Were" created by Gio. The site is in its tenth year of showcasing Gio's virtual card creating skills.

Outfielder Jim Lyttle was selected out of Florida State University by the New York Yankees in the first round (10th overall) of the 1966 MLB Draft. Lyttle made his MLB debut in 1969. He remained in the Major Leagues with the Yankees through the 1971 season. He was traded to the Chicago White Six before the '72 season. After one season with the Sox, he was traded to the Kansas City Royals, who then sold him to the Montreal Expos halfway through the '73 season. Lyttle actually never played for the Royals, spending his partial '73 season in the minors. Early in the '74 season, the New York Mets purchased Lyttle and released him late in the season without ever bringing him to the big league club. He signed with the White Sox after the '74 season and played for their AAA team, before being purchased by the Expos  midseason. In midseason '76, the Expos released him and he signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers, who released him at the end of the season, ending his career.

Overall, in parts of eight MLB seasons, Lyttle played in 391 games. He accumulated 176 hits with nine homers, 70 RBIs, 71 runs scored and four stolen bases. He hit .248 for his career.

For his efforts, Lyttle appeared on Topps cards 1970-72 and '74. That left '73 and '75-77 missing. As I mentioned, these cards were already done by Lynn (the first two) and Gio (the last two). Since they did great jobs, there was no need for me to recreate them. Still, I wanted to feature Lyttle and it gave me a reason to promote the work of Lynn and Gio again.

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