There are a bunch of the Kellogg’s 3D All Stars in this shoebox. And evidently Kellogg’s and the real All Star Game have something in common:
Every team needed to be represented. I have no quarrel with that in the world of 3D cards. If I grew up in the Pacific Northwest and had a poorly playing new expansion team, I’d want to have at least one ray of hope landing in my bowl of Frosted Flakes.
Rupert Jones was the Mariners representative in the actual All Star Game in the inaugural season. Now why HE didn’t get the Tony the Tiger treatment is unclear.
According to WAR, Meyer couldn’t crack the top 10 of a team that lost 104 games. So why the heck is he in 3D?
The former Santa Ana College standout was a fourth round pick by the Detroit Tigers in 1972.
He put up big numbers for Bristol in 1972 and had decent power numbers in Lakeland in 1973 and a high average for AAA Evansville in 1974, earning him a call up.
In his two full seasons for the Tigers, didn’t show a lot of power, didn’t walk much, didn’t steal many bases and had a medicore average, which is redundant when you think about it.
So after a pair of nondescript seasons for Detroit, he was exposed in the expansion draft to fill the rosters of the new Toronto Blue Jays and Seattle Mariners.
Ruppert Jones was the first pick. Bob Bailor, who would also get the 3D treatment, went second to Toronto.
Meyer, now converted from second base to the outfield to first base, went 9th. He went 0 for 4 in the first ever game played by the Mariners, a 7-0 loss to the Angels.
Through April 15, he was batting .176 and posting an OPS of .459. He fared a little better in May and June but was hardly setting Seattle ablaze. Meyer started hitting in July, capping his best day on July 26th. He hit a 3 run homer off of Minnesota’s Tom Burgmeier, finishing the game with 5 RBI and raised his OPS to .769.
He had a solid August as well and finished the year with 22 homers, 90 RBI and a .273 average, the only stats anyone looked at back then.
So here he is with the sweet old school Mariners trident and the powder blue away unis and being treated like an All Star in 3 dimensions. He would hit 20 homers again in 1979 but by then Bruce Bochte represented the M’s when they hosted the All Star Game (and he got an All Star Card.)
Meyer took his left handed bat to Oakland in 1982 but made little impact. He bounced around the minors for a while before fading into obscurity and into my shoebox in the form of this card.
He hit homers, drove in 90 runs and had an average that was above .270. In 1977 that was eye popping and what teams wanted. Today we understand players value more.
But do not get overly confident. Future generations will look at how we evaluate players and find us to be primitive and unaware of factors that they will see as common sense.
Maybe future baseball experts will look at Dan Meyer and see him as an under appreciated player.
Maybe Kellogg’s was on to something.