You can't fault Topps for not having produced such a card in '57. Back then Hazle had only played six games in the majors, with the 1955 Cincinnati Redlegs.
After coming to the Braves in the pre-season 1956 trade with Corky Valentine for George Crowe, Hazle had been assigned to Class AAA Wichita for the year, and had begun 1957 there.
To go back to the beginning to understand why I've done four Bob Hazle custom cards, please read my blog post of Sept. 18, 2014, Why Bob Hazle .
My first Bob Hazle custom card was done in the format of 1955 Topps, as a Cincinnati Redlegs rookie. It was originally on the blog on July 4, 2014: 1955 Topps Hazle .
On Sept. 19, 2014, I presented my 1959 Topps-format Bob Hazle card, reflecting his sale to the Detroit Tigers: 1959 Topps Bob Hazle .
The next day I introduced my 1956 Topps-style Hazle card: 1956 Topps Hazle .
This 1957-style card was not an easy build. I had a nice portrait photo of "Hurricane," but it was in black-and-white with a plain background. For my card front I had to colorize the photo and find an appropriate background.
After looking over all the original 1957 Topps Milwaukee Braves cards, my decision came down to those of Chuck Tanner and Dave Jolly. After looking at each version for several days I landed upon the Jolly background. I'm satisfied with my choice.
Actually, if the right picture came along, a 1952 Topps-style card wouldn't be out of the question. In 1951 he was hitting .280 at Tulsa and had been named to the Texas League All-Star team when he was reportedly called up by Cincinnati. Uncle Sam had a prior claim, however, and Hazle spent the rest of the 1951 season, all of 1952 and more than half of 1953 in the Army.
If a '52T-format card does come to fruition, you'll see it here first.
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