Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Generation Then - Brian Downing

Before Brian Downing was an Angel, he was a White Sox (White Sock?).
He was a Sock for 5 years from 1973 to 1977. And he shows every bit of the 70's on his 1976 Topps card. Makes sense.

I think that I appreciate more a card from an era that really shows how people looked and dressed in that era. You can look at a lot of pictures on baseball cards and if you were unfamiliar with the era of the uniform or the year the card was produced you couldn't tell it by just looking at the picture. Seriously, does anyone really remember the Sox wearing the red uniforms?

This one you can easily tell the era by observing Brians bushy red locks.

Being born in October of 1950, Downing was about 25 when this photo was taken. I was 12. You see a lot of long hair in the cards from the mid to late 70's. You see a lot of long hair in my family pictures from the mid to late 70's. I can relate. Maybe that's why I like this card so much.

A couple years after the photo above Brian had cut his hair a bit, maybe due to an Angels dress code, but he still shows some shag and now he's sporting a nice pair of orange tinted Carrera-Porsche sunglasses. Very late 70's.

Downing played for the Angels from 1978-1990, twelve years, then two more years with the Rangers. His cards from the 80's are pretty boring, not really dated except by the design.

Of all his cards though, that 1976 one is my favorite even though he's not pictured as an Angel.


  1. I was a big Brian Downinbg fan, especially during his time in Chicago. I love those red pinstripes (which are coming back in 2012). Downing's 1977 card is pretty 70's, too.

  2. I agree, the '76 is a great picture, and it's made greater by the bitchin' color combo of the card. (Hey, bitchin' is totally a word I would have used in summer of '76).
    I love that '77 as well. Dig the turtle neck sweater and the shades. He almost looks like Kevin Bacon on that card, geared up to do a malt liquor commercial.

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  4. Here's a link to that 77:


    That one definitely tops both of these (which, you have to admit, is pretty darn hard to do).