for those of you to new to baseball to know, there was indeed a Frank Thomas who hit homeruns before the Frank Thomas you are thinking of. This Frank Thomas burst on the scene full time in Pittsburgh, in 1953, blasting 30 round trippers with 102 rbi's while finishing in the top twenty in MVP voting.
A solid power hitter, this Frank Thomas took over the reigns from HOF'er and legendary Ralph Kiner in 1953 and played the next six years with the Pirates, hitting 163 homeruns. 1958 was Thomas' best year blasting 35 HR's and driving in 109 (both ranked 2nd in the NL behind Cub great and HOF'er Ernie Banks) and finishing fourth in MVP voting. For his efforts, Thomas actually appeared on the cover of sports illustrated on July 28, 1958.
This Frank Thomas was a Chicago Cub in 1960 (coming over from the Cincinnati Reds in 1959, note his uniform) and part of 1961. One of the nicest guys in baseball, always smiling (note his slight smile in this 1960 Topps card # 95) and one of the most feared power hitters of his day.
His career spanned sixteen years, with seven teams ending up in Chicago once again in 1966 before calling it quits. His fianl numbers of 1671 hits a .266 BA to go along with his 286 HR's and 962 RBI's are not too shabby. If you are interested in learning more about this "original" Frank Thomas I highly recommend you check this out: the Original Frank Thomas .
Thomas did play for the "original" New York Mets in 1962 leading the team in HR's (34) and RBI's (94). This Frank Thomas was the "original" . . . . twice !
Heritage 2017 and Topps 1968 Side By Side
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