It took 20 years, but I finally got one

When I was a young collector, one of the sets that always seemed out of reach to me was 1990 Leaf.  If you were a collector that year and didn’t have your own job, or the means to buy your own baseball cards, you know the feeling I’m talking about.

The unfulfilled desire that filled your body when you saw those crisp blue, red and silver foil wrappers in that silver box depicting Nolan Ryan.  The cards in those wrappers were the epitome of the collecting world in 1990. A sleek, clean design highlighted with white borders and silver graphics that gave the collector the feel that they were living a luxurious life … well, in a cardboard sense anyway.

This was premium. This product was filled with rookies. Frank Thomas, John Olerud, Ben McDonald, Kevin Maas,  David Justice, Eric Anthony, Steve Avery, etc.  — they were all there. (Except Juan Gonzalez, anyway.)

Over time I managed to acquire all of the aforementioned rookie cards.  But there was one card that always eluded me, and it was not even a rookie card.  It was the Griffey shown above.

A year removed from being pictured on the first, and most prominent, card in the 1989 Upper Deck set, Griffey adorns the front of this long-desired card.  The card used to trade hands at more than $20 cash; that was a market level at which I was not able to play in during the heyday of this card.

Alas here we are 20 years later and I have finally acquired one of my white whales. And in the grand scheme of things, it really didn’t cost me much, if anything, at all.

Such is the case with all of these once highly desirable cards from our collecting youth.  Just about anything that seemed untouchable can be had for pennies on the dollar.  I’m not really sure how that makes me feel.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: