This one comes a few months later than expected. Yes, I said months. Back in June, or maybe it was May, I found at one of my local treasure dens two baggies of cards that were for sale for $1 each. I snagged ’em both because they contained multiples of cards that I felt were at least worth writing about. However, it was not until a few days ago that I actually brought the cards into my house for scanning.
You see, sometimes when I am on the run I grab cards, thumb through them real quick and then stash them under one of the seats of my car. And that’s where they say, stewing in their juices for some 60 days or so, waiting for their new owner to look them over again and write something pithy about their existence. Today is their lucky day.
As you can see from the image above, there were multiples of many cards in these packages. In this case there are some 24 instruction cards for some 1985 Topps Rub Off “cards.” They aren’t worth anything and will likely be round-filed here within a few hours unless someone can convince me otherwise. I did find the instructions somewhat intriguing, particularly the last part that tries to convince us that there is some magic — PRESTO! — involved here. Must be the same guys who thought Atari 2600 was the pinnacle of realistic video games.
From 24, we go to eight … as in the number of these funky Barry Sanders Topps cards I cannot identify. They appear to be 1997 and have a foil-type finish to the fronts. I immediately want to guess that they are some sort of parallel, but yet I cannot find them on Beckett’s Web site or Check Out My Cards. A little help, anyone? These are Card No. 2.
I’m not a football collector, but I find some soft, minimal value in this rookie-year Bo Jackson release. Pretty cool image of Bo breaking loose as a Los Angeles Raider. Too bad the guy got hurt a few years later; he coulda been Barry Sanders, or vice versa.
Might as well get these basketball cards out of the way now since I’ve started with a few non-baseball released. Here’s three serial numbered parallels — the black borders are /500 and the gold is /100. I HATE that Topps made some of these thick to serve as decoys in packs — I bet a good number of parallels got ruined by searchers.
While we’re on serial numbered Gold Topps cards, here’s a 2008 Topps Paul Byrd that managed to sneak its way into my collection. The more I think about 2008 Topps, the more the design irritates me.
And now the “good” stuff.
Back in the 1990, I remember walking into my local shop and seeing for sale some boxes of actual Bazooka Gum that contained ONE trading card. The boxes contained early releases of Ken Griffey Jr (if memory serves me right) and players who were sure to set the game on fire like Jerome Walton and Dwight Smith. And of course you had one of the most awkward-looking players of the era, Chris Sabo. This guy rocked the goggles like no one else ever did; well, maybe James Worthy. And he did so while en route to earning National League Rookie of the Year honors. This was a fun (and cheap) walk down memory lane.
That little stroll through the 1990s index part of my brain also made me remember Diamond Kings, which were all the rage in 1992. Those gems were drawn by this man, Dick Perez, featured on these 1983 Donruss cards. I have to get one of these signed by Dick, it’d be a cool card to add to my collection. Dick, if you’re reading, one (or both) is(are) headed your way.
Before Diamond Kings were all shiny, golden and covered in gloss, they were simply drawings of a player and part of the basic set. Here Ty Cobb is depicted as a Diamond King on this “Puzzle” card from 1983 Donruss. These show collectors what the puzzle pieces inserted in that year’s packs are supposed to build. Love these.
1983 Donruss is an interesting set in and of itself, solid rookies — Ryne Sandberg, Tony Gwynn and Wade Boggs, to name a few — but also for the subset cards. Here’s the MVP’s card of Frank Robinson, Vida Blue and America’s favorite television baseball analyst Joe Morgan.
And we finish things off in a super-serious way — the Infamous San Diego Chicken. Sadly, this is NOT his rookie card, which would have been a great addition to my Ultimate Rookie Card Collection. The Chicken also appears on a card in 1982 Donruss.