What’s Wrong With This Card – Lenny Barker

Even though I have issues with this 1982 Fleer card, I really like it. Here’s why:

The card commemorates the perfect game thrown by Cleveland’s Lenny Barker on May 15, 1981. Perfect games, where twenty-seven players come to the plate to take their at bats without any of them getting on base, rarely happen. When they do, it is the pitcher who receives all of the acclaim. I’m not taking issue with that. What’s noteworthy about this card is that Fleer recognized both the pitcher and the catcher. The card shows pitcher Len Barker and catcher Bo Diaz posing in what I like to consider a reflective moment. In all of my years as a baseball card collector, this is the only one I recall where the catcher was credited.

I don’t want to minimize Len Barker’s incredible feat. This is about giving a tip of the cap to the catcher, who calls the pitch, sets the target and works in partnership with the pitcher.

The back of the card includes the words “both participated.” I like that. By recognizing the catcher, in addition to the pitcher, Fleer got it right. That much said, there is something wrong with this card. Have you spotted it? Please let me know.


In each installment of this ongoing series, I will present a baseball card for your review. If you study the card carefully you will find something about it that is not quite right. Once you’ve determined what it is, please identify it in a comment. I will identify the readers who correctly identified the incorrect aspect of the card in an upcoming post. Thank you, and have fun. 


8 Comments on "What’s Wrong With This Card – Lenny Barker"

  1. Nancy Medbery says:

    The punctuation and sentence structure on the back of the card would get my school teacher’s red pen waving. Municipal Stadium? I thought it was Cleveland Stadium? I do applaud their lack of gaudy necklaces for manly men. A sigh for simpler times.

  2. Grubby Glove says:

    You memory has tricked you. It USED to be called Cleveland Municipal Stadium, but that old yard was torn down many years ago. The Indians are in a new ballpark now. The Indians moved into Jacobs Field for the 1994 season. It was named for the owners, David & Richard Jacobs. Most fans called it “the Jake.”

    Like many teams, the Indians sold the naming rights, so it is now called Progressive Field. I’m calling it Shea…. oops! The Jake!

  3. Barb says:

    Diaz wasn’t the catcher…Ron Hassey was.

  4. Barb says:

    Diaz wasn’t the catcher, Ron Hassey was.

  5. Gary McDonald says:

    diaz didnt catch that game.

  6. Gary McDonald says:

    In fact Diaz was a Phillie when this card came out. He was traded November 1981 to Philly.

  7. John Barr says:

    this is an odd card…barker and diaz both posed for it, but they both knew (or at least they should’ve known) that diaz didn’t catch the perfect game.

    • Grubby Glove says:

      Thank you for your comment, John. I am a baseball card guy and have posted several “what’s wrong with the card” posts. The answers follow in a later post. I’m always looking for cards like this. On my Grubby Glove Facebook page, under my Photo Albums, I have one I call “Gallery of Stupid Baseball Cards,” which you may enjoy.

      Enjoy the remaining season and the playoffs. Kindest Regards,
      Michael Jawitz
      AKA: Grubby Glove

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