Grand Cards: A Champion's Stache: #1 Tom Brookens

Saturday, September 5, 2009

A Champion's Stache: #1 Tom Brookens

And so, we have reached the end of our journey. In just a few moments, I will wipe away three weeks of hard work as I attempt to make myself look something like our #1 Tiger Mustache:

1984 Topps #14 Tom Brookens

I will say, this choice was shrouded in controversy when I made it, but I am happy with the selection. Tom Brookens has the classic 80's mustache--full and strong, while showing off his wild side. I think both the action shot and the posed picture inset wonderfully showcased his selleck-esque choice.

Am I right? Ooh, Tom Selleck is nothing if not manly! (That is actually true. It was the 80's though, so grains of salt, please)

Of course '84 began the low decline of Brookens, as he was platooned with a mustached-great-to-be, a young Howard Johnson, who certainly knew his way around some facial hair as well.

In just a few years, Brookens would still have his stache, but would look decidedly uncool. Later, he would unceremoniously be listed among the 40 Most Undeserving Starting Lineup Figures of All Time (H/T to Rob Neyer's Blog). That sounds about right, actually, considering that as I kid I LOVED Starting Lineup Figures, and not only didn't I not even think about picking up a Tom Brookens, but I didn't even know that his figure existed. I do love how the description of him in the starting lineup post even mentions his killer stache. What can I say, it was his trademark of on team, like Johnny Grubb's enormous glasses, or Chris Sabo's Rec Specs.

With all that, we are left with but one thought. We'll always have 1984. At the pinnacle of mid-80's coolness, Tom Brookens stands alone on the team, as a man among mustaches. And that, is why is is number one on our list.

1 comment:

  1. Nice flashback - Just today I picked my five favorite sports figures of all time on my facebook page and, in order, positioned them as such:

    1. Steve Yzerman
    2. Barry Sanders
    3. Kirk Gibson
    4. Tommy Brookens
    5. Alan Trammel

    In hindsight, I should have flip-flopped Brookens and Trammel, but Tommy has always been one of my favorites. Not blessed with an enormous amount of talent, Tommy ALWAYS gave everything he had for the team; taking (attempting) the extra base, running hard to first on easy groundouts, taking a beating at third base. The consummate teammate. Kirk Gibson without the talent.

    Every year, Sparky would bring in people to take over the 3rd base position, but in the end it was always Brookens. (Though I believe Castillo got most of the playing time at 3rd in the 84' World Series.)

    Loved Tommy Brookens! And I didn't know he had a Starting LineUp figure either, but I am going to try to find one now that you mentioned it!

    Your lack of respect for Brookens reminds me of a funny story.... In the height of his playing career, my girlfriend's sister was the live-in nanny for Alan Trammel. As it turns out, Tommy & Alan's wives were good friends.

    One day Tommy came by the Trammel's house while his wife Christa was sitting in the kitchen with Alan Trammel's wife. The nanny Debbie answered the door and puzzled, asked the man if she could help him. He announced that he was Tommy Brookens, to which her reply was "Oh, you must be Christa's husband!"

    The guy got no respect......