Monday, November 17, 2014

Danny Cater: Master of Disguise

He’s like Inspector Clouseau. Here, let me show you …


In one scene, he’s a wet-behind-the-ears rookie with a buzz cut and a dopey look.


In the next, he’s a high-hatted regular.

And here Danny has disguised himself as a Red Stocking.  He painted the B on the hat himself!

Would you take a look at those sideburns!

Wily veteran with pieces of fur glued onto his cheeks?

Gap-tooted Sparky Lyle wannabe?

Hard to believe, but I was actually a Yankee fan as a kid. Now, this was back when they were absolutely awful. Yes, there actually was a gap between the old Yankees of Mantle and DiMaggio and Ruth and Gehrig, and the Yankees of the Steinbrenner era. I’m talking about guys like Bobby Murcer, Mel Stottlemyre, Horace Clarke, Roy White … and Danny Cater.

For some reason, Cater was one of my favorites. Maybe it was the name. Maybe it was his 1971 action-shot card (see below). I’m not sure.

Cater actually wasn’t with the Yankees that long – just two years out of 12 total. Cater also wasn’t actually all that good either. He was a light-hitting first baseman (66 homers in 4,451 at bats) who could put the bat on the ball (he was especially hard to strike out), but had absolutely no speed whatsoever (he regularly finished in the top ten for GIDPs).

His main claim to fame seems to be getting traded for Sparky Lyle. Lyle would go on to spearhead the resurgent Yankees – winning a Cy Young Award, leading the league in saves twice, appearing on the All Star squad three times, winning the Nobel Peace Prize, curing cancer … Danny Cater? Not so much.

* - author has this card


  1. Actually, Danny Cater seemed like royalty to me when I was a kid, because of this card, in the first set I ever collected--

    Second in batting--and in heady company. Of course, it was the year of the pitcher….

  2. Wow! Totally forgot all about that. Hard to believe you could hit .290 and come in second in batting. What a year, huh?