Saturday, November 8, 2014

1993 TOPPS FINEST: #159 DEAN PALMER

RIGHT AT HOME WITH THE '90s RANGERS.


ALL OF NOTHING AT THE PLATE.


DEFINING THE PLAYER

  • Dean Palmer was the perfect third baseman for the home-run-or-bust Rangers of the early 1990s. He swung a powerful stick at the plate and carried an iron glove in the field. Add 100-plus strikeouts a season, and you had the prototypical Ranger of that era. Palmer played 14 years for three teams, hit 275 homers, drove in 849 runs and slashed .251/.324/.472. 

DEFINING MOMENT

  • In the Rangers' first playoff game in franchise history on Oct. 1, 1996, Palmer helped make it memorable. After #116 Juan Gonzalez gave Texas a 3-1 lead over the Yankees with a homer in the fourth, Palmer followed with a two-run shot off #115 David Cone to extend the lead. The Rangers went on to win 6-2, but the Yankees would win the next three games.

DEFINING SEASON

  • Palmer established career highs in '96 in homers (38), batting average (.280), on-base percentage (.348) and slugging (.527) while driving in 107 runs.

FIVE FINAL FACTS

  1. In '92, he was the first Ranger to homer in the first three games of a season. Ian Kinsler and Nelson Cruz later equaled the feat.
  2. Struck out at least 145 times in five seasons, including leading the majors with 154 in '92.
  3. Traded to the Royals in July '97 for Tom Goodwin and made his first All-Star team a year later, hitting 34 homers and driving in a career-high 119.
  4. His defensive WAR for his career was -8.8.
  5. Signed as a free agent with the Tigers for the '99 season and matched his career-high in homers with 38 and drove in 100 runs.

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