In 2012, the Padres were one of those consistent bottom feeder teams that could never really get anything done, and this was only a few years removed from a playoff push. The low-budget core of Chase Headley, Yonder Alonso, Will Venable and Everth Cabrera kept them afloat for a few years, but things didn't really get cracking til Machado came aboard.
Still, 2012 featured some unfamiliar developments that Topps didn't bother to depict. The one above might be the biggest deal, considering that Topps seems to think that Miles Mikolas' rookie year was in 2018 [then again, what the hell does ANYONE know about what qualifies as a rookie?]. Before Japan, Miles Mikolas got his start with the Padres, and made his debut in 2012. It was in time for the rookie cutoff and the Update cutoff, but, you know...reliever. In 25 games, Mikolas had a 3.62 ERA with 23 Ks, not too bad. These would be his best pre-Japan numbers, as we'll discuss in a few days.
Tomorrow, quite a few customs for the 2012 Phillies.