Dale Berra

April 9th, 2012 by I Love Nerd York City

Welcome back! We here at Nerd Central are psyched that baseball season has begun, and we are going to try to get back to our regular posting schedule.

While looking for a card to post today, I found this Dale Berra card, and was struck by two things: 1) why is the photographer insisting on a Little League pose, and 2) is Mr. Berra wearing pins on his hat?

Mr. Berra is the son of Hall-of-Famer Yogi Berra, and played in more games than any other son of a Hall-of-Fame player.  He was a member of the 1979 World Series champion Pittsburgh Pirates.

Unfortunately, Mr. Berra struggled with cocaine-related-issues.  From Wikipedia:

On September 9, 1985,Berra testified during the cocaine distribution trial of Curtis Strong that he shared cocaine with Lee Lacy, John Milner, Dave Parker, Lee Mazzilli and Rod Scurry while all were members of the Pirates, and that his own drug use peaked while he was injured during the 1984 season.

On February 28, 1986 Baseball Commissioner Peter Ueberroth handed down suspensions to eleven players, seven of whom received a full season suspension, including Berra. All avoided the suspensions by agreeing to donate a small percentage of their 1986 salaries to a drug program and do community service work. The players who received the full year suspensions were allowed to play under the condition that they donated ten percent of their base salaries to drug-related community service, submitted to random drug testing, and contributed 100 hours of drug-related community service.

In April 1989, Berra was indicted in a drug raid on an operation that allegedly distributed $15,000 to $20,000 worth of cocaine each week in Morris, Passaic, Somerset, Union and his hometown, Essex County, New Jersey.

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3 Responses to “Dale Berra”

  1. DeNerd Span says:

    Awesome card. In regards to the pin on the hat I’m almost positive it was that the Pirates did an Ohio State “earn-a-buckeye-on-the-helmet” type thing. Pretty sure Willie Stargell would give them out.

  2. Ghost of Steve Jeltz says:

    Look at those pants! I’m so glad to have grown up in the ‘80s. There’s no magic in today’s uniforms; pajama pants and “classic”-styled jerseys that all look about the same. I want to see bold colors and some muscle tone, damnit! To say nothing of the decline of stirrups and flip-up shades.

  3. jamie shields says:

    i’m a little late to the party here, but i thought i’d chime in that, yes, those are merits starts on mr berra’s hat… otherwise known as “Stargell Stars” – they were given out by Pops Stargell himself after every game and were awarded to anyone that had contributed to the game (either via a clutch hit, a great catch, etc. ) in a positive way. they were part of the great team chemistry that existed in ’79 when the Bucs took it all the way to a WS victory.

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