Monday, January 30, 2012
Time: 257 Days
Item Sent: 1986 ProCards Orlando Twins, 1987 ProCards Portland Beavers, 1988 CMC Portland Beavers, 1988 ProCards Portland Beavers
Item Received: 1986 ProCards Orlando Twins, 1987 ProCards Portland Beavers, 1988 CMC Portland Beavers, 1988 ProCards Portland Beavers. All signed in black marker.
As great as the Twins were in the late 1980s, they were not exactly bursting at the seams with major league quality talent in the minor league system. Few names really stood out in their minor league baseball card team sets. Phil Wilson did stand out... not because he was on the fast track to the big leagues (he never did make it), but because he had the name. He was the brother of Mets star* Mookie Wilson. [* "Star" not meaning "elite player" in this case, but rather meaning "average player with a big smile, popular because he played in New York and his name was Mookie."]
Phil Wilson did look like he had a chance to be a major league player for a couple of years. In 1985 at Visalia, he hit .297 with 49 stolen bases. More impressively, he posted a .389 on-base percentage. He carried that performance to AA Orlando in 1986, hitting .293 and showing a tad more power. There were signs, though, that the higher level was giving him more trouble. His walk rate plummeted and, most important to his game, he stole 25 fewer bases than the year before while getting thrown out just as many times. Promoted to AAA in 1987, he badly struggled to a .227/.317/.288 slash line. His 35 steals proved he had big league wheels, but he just didn't have the bat and he ended up getting passed on the Twins depth chart by similar but younger players like Jarvis Brown and J.T. Bruett. After a half-season in the Expos organization in 1989, Wilson's playing career was over.