Friday, March 16, 2018

Rockey Sageniuk

Rocky Sageniuk - Has hockey card with baseball related sketch

The card: 1980/81 Topps

What it says about baseball: "Have a charity softball team during the summer months."

   There isn't much a story here, just very odd softball sketch on the back of this hockey card. Sageniuk doesn't appear to have any connections to softball or baseball. I guess Topps was having a hard time finding an interesting fact about Mr. Sageniuk? In any case, its just a weird ball cameo on a hockey card.
   From 1978 to 1984 Rocky Sageniuk played 259 regular season games in the NHL. He spent most of that time with the Toronto Maple Leafs but finished his career with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Dan Bonar

Dan Bonar - NHL alumni whose favorite off-ice interest was baseball.

The card: 1982/83 OPC

What it says about baseball: "His favorite off-ice interest is playing baseball."

The story:

   From 1980 to 1983 Dan Bonar played 170 games in the NHL with the Los Angeles Kings. Dan Bonar did not play any notable high level competitive baseball but it was enough of a pastime to have it noted on his hockey card as it being his favorite off-ice interest. Bonar grew up playing youth and junior baseball in Manitoba.
   Bonar remained involved in hockey after retiring as a player. He's currently working for the WHL's Vancouver Giants and before that had spent over a decade with the Calgary Hitmen.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Jeff Huson

Jeff Huson - MLB alumni, son Kyle Huson played Division I hockey

The Card: 1993 Topps

This card mentions's Jeff's son, Kyle, who would go on to play a different sport...

The card: 2014/15 UConn Roster Card

The story: 

   Jeff Huson played 15 seasons of professional baseball and spent 12 of those in the majors. The infielder played for the Montreal Expos, Texas Rangers, Baltimore Orioles, Milwaukee Brewers, Seattle Mariners, Anaheim Angels and Chicago Cubs. Huson retired in 2000 with 439 hits in 827 career games. In recent years, he is best remembered as a color analyst with the Colorado Rockies. Although son Jeff never took a particular interest in the sport of hockey, his son, Kyle, did make an impact in the winter sport. 
   From 2012 to 2016 Kyle Huson played Division I NCAA hockey with the University of Connecticut Huskies. A number of his teammates went on to play professional hockey. Huson got interested in the sport when his father took him to a Dallas Stars game as a child. As explained in a 2017 article about the father/son duo...
When Jeff Huson was playing for the Texas Rangers in the mid-1990s, he took 5-year-old Kyle to a Dallas Stars hockey game and remembers his son being mesmerized. Kyle didn't want to eat. He didn't want to drink. He didn't want to walk around. "He just stared and stared at the players and said, 'Dad, I want to learn how to skate like them,'" Jeff recalled. (1)
   Although Kyle played a different sport than his father, his career path didn't fall far from the family tree. Kyle followed his fathers footsteps into broadcasting. He studied journalism and communications at UConn and, intriguingly, was calling baseball games at the school while he played on the hockey team. Kyle played hockey but he still kept a passion for baseball that allowed him to do broadcasting for the sport. After graduating, he advanced to calling minor-pro baseball games and hopes to make it to the MLB like his father. 

(1) Branding Iron. Q&A with Jeff Huson: UW Alumnus and Rockies Color Analyst . March 1, 2017:

Friday, March 2, 2018


Youppi! - Former MLB Expos mascot who became Montreal Canadiens NHL mascot

The cards: 1993 Upper Deck Fun Pack & 2009 Montreal Canadiens Centennial

The story:

   Youppi! is one of the most recognizable sports mascots in North America. He was created by designer Bonnie Erickson, who worked for Jim Henson and designed the Muppets. He's 'unofficially/officially' one of just 3 mascots in the Baseball Hall of Fame. From 1979 to 2004 he was the official mascot of the MLB's Montreal Expos. When the Expos moved to Washington, DC the fate of Youppi! was up in the air. He made history in 2005 when he became the first mascot to switch major sports leagues, going from the MLB to the NHL. When the Expos left town Youppi! was given a home with the local NHL team, the Montreal Canadiens.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Peter Hankinson

Peter Hankinson - Professional hockey player & NHL draft pick who was also drafted by the MLB's Houston Astros

The card: 1990/91 ProCards

The story:

   Peter Hankinson was drafted by the NHL's Winnipeg Jets in the 1989 NHL Supplemental Draft. At the time, college graduates who had gone undrafted as teens were involved in a special NHL 'supplemental' draft. Hankinson, after playing 4 years at the University of Minnesota, was the 4th pick of the '89 draft. Hankinson was signed by the Jets and went on to play 3 seasons of professional hockey. He played in the AHL and IHL but never made it to the big leagues.
   Peter Hankison, whose father was an NFL drafted quarterback and whose two brothers played in the NHL, also excelled at an entirely different sport, baseball. At high school in Edina, Minnesota Hankinson was named All-Conference in hockey and baseball. In 1987, the Houston Astros drafted Peter Hankinson in the 42nd round, 1056th overall in the MLB draft. Hankinson continued his hockey career at the University of Minnesota. Playing for the Division I standout hockey club took up all his time and he never seriously considered joining the Astros baseball club.
   Hankinson is a member of a very small and prestigious group of athletes drafted by both the NHL and MLB.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Dave Pichette

Dave Pichette - NHL alumni who also played baseball

The card: 1983/84 OPC

What it says about baseball: "Also played baseball"

The story:

   This is another one of those cases where, due to a lack of more information, the card is the story. This mid-1980s hockey card notes that NHL player Dave Pichette also played baseball. Its the only reference I can find connecting Pichette with baseball. He grew up in Newfoundland, Canada and likely played baseball during the summers as a youth.
   During the 1980s defenseman Dave Pichette played over 300 games in the NHL, dressing the the Quebec Nordiques, St. Louis Blues, New Jersey Devils and New York Rangers.

Perry Miller

Perry Miller - NHL alumni with hockey card that mentions ball

The card: 1979/80 Topps

What it says about baseball: "Perry lists softball among his hobbies."

The story:

   Though not exactly baseball, this softball reference is close enough to belong on my list of hockey/baseball cards that mention the other sport. This one is interesting because the hockey card had a neat little baseball sketch on the back of it. This is one of those instances were the card is the story. Miller doesn't have a notable baseball or softball playing career. Like many Canadians, he likely played the sport during the off season to keep in shape.
   Defenseman Perry Miller spent 3 seasons in the WHA and later 4 seasons in the NHL with the Detroit Red Wings. He held the WHA record for most goals by a defenseman in one game with 4. Miller is a member of the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame.