From time to time I found myself rooting for the Cubbies. They certainly didn't hold my interest like the Braves did, but you can't help but pull for a team when you spend so much time watching them. I didn't know it at the time, but one of my favorite players for the Cubs during those years would eventually get traded to my Braves. His name, Jody Davis.
Every time Davis came up to the plate, Cubs announcer Harry Caray would sing, "Joooodeee, Jooodeee Davis..." The rest of the song is a blur. I've searched for the lyrics and I've found some fan saying that it went: "Jody, Jody Davis, hit one in the upper tier. Jody, Jody Davis, catcher extraordinare." One fellow claims that Caray sang, "catcher without peer," while another contradicted that by stating that what Caray really sang was "catcher without fear." Oh, and another said that it was sung to the tune of Davy Crockett. The legend of Jody Davis just continues to grow...
Anyway, while at the card show last weekend, I came across a table that had a number of unfamiliar cards. Not just any cards- but oddballs; food-issues. Probably five or six from the 1982 Red Lobster Chicago Cubs set. I initially was going to pick up the Leon Durham card, just to have a Red Lobster in my collection. Then I heard Jody calling my name.
While the photography isn't the best, the cards are worth picking up.
Davis only had one card prior to the 1982 season- and that was a minor league card (1979 Jackson Mets TCMA). But after a strong debut in '81, all three card manufacturers included the 6'4 backstop in their 1982 releases. And while Beckett will never refer to this release as a RC- I will, and do.
Size: 2-1/4" x 3-1/2"
Sets Produced: 15,000 *according to the Standard Catalog of Baseball Cards, 2011
Set Size: 28 cards
In a Jam
I haven't been able to find a date for when these cards were handed out at Wrigley, but judging by the play at the plate, the location, and fan attire, I'm going to guess that they were handed out late in the season. The Braves player pictured is none other than Rufino Linares, and a quick check of baseballreference.com tells me that this couldn't be from Davis' 1981 rookie season, nor from a series in Chicago in May of '82. That leaves this photo as being from the game on either July 17th or July 18th, 1982.