Category Archives: 'Same Cards, Different Paths'

‘Same Card, Different Paths’ – Card #7

‘Same Card, Different Paths’ – Card #7

1972 Topps – Card #79 – AKA – ‘The Carlton Fisk Rookie Card’


Mike Garman – Drafted 3rd in the 1967 draft, Garman hardly had the career one would expect of a 3rd pick in the draft.  Still, Garman enjoyed a 9-season career while playing with the Boston Red Sox, St. Louis Cardinals, Chicago Cubs, and Los Angeles Dodgers.  Garman finished his career with a 22-27 record while collecting 42 saves.  With a 3.63 ERA Garman appeared in 303 games and pitched 433 innings. 

Cecil Cooper – Cooper played 16 years in the big leagues and enjoyed successful stints with the Red Sox and Brewers.  He was a 5-time All-Star, 3-time Silver Slugger winner and winner of 2 Gold Gloves.  Cooper has 2,192 career hits alongside 241 home runs, 1,012 runs scored, and 1,125 RBI.  With a career batting average of .298, Cooper had 7,939 plate appearances during his career. 

Carlton Fisk – A true baseball superstar, Fisk had an amazing 24-year baseball career.  Playing for both the Red & White Sox, Fisk pu up Hall of Fame numbers throughout his career.  His amazing numbers include 376 home runs, 1,330 RBI, and 1,276 runs scored.  Fisk’s trophy shelf includes the Rookie of the Year award, 11 All-Star appearances, 3 Silver Slugger trophies, and 1 Gold Glove award.

‘Same Card, Different Paths’ – Card #6

‘Same Card, Different Paths’ – Card #6

1973 Topps – Card #615 – AKA – ‘The Mike Schmidt Rookie Card’

Schmidt rookie

Ron Cey – A 6-time All-star, Ron Cey was a solid contributor to the dominant Dodger teams of the mid-to-late 1970’s.  Cey offered a great blend of contact and power hitting along with a knack for driving in timely runs.  In 1981, Cey won the World Series MVP award as he helped his Dodgers team with the championship.  In that series, Cey hit .350 while collecting 7 hits and driving in 6 runs in 6 games.

John Hilton – No information found…

Mike Schmidt – The top third baseman of the 1970’s and 1980’s, Schmidt was a perennial All-star and top MVP candidate every season.  A member of the 500 home run club and Baseball’s Hall of Fame, Schmidt will go down as one of the greatest power hitters of all-time and the game’s most well-rounded third baseman in the history of the sport.

** on a side note, if Ron Cey’s rookie card featured any other player that debuted in the 1973 season besides Mike Schmidt, the card would certainly be known as the ‘Ron Cey Rookie Card’.

‘Same Card, Different Paths’ – Card #5

‘Same Card, Different Paths’ – Card #5

1975 Topps – Card #620 – AKA – ‘The Gary Carter Rookie Card’


Gary Carter – Hall of Famer Carter is an 11-time All-star.  While playing 19 years in the big leagues, Carter was a very well-rounded player as he collected 3 Gold Glove Awards, 5 Silver Slugger Awards, and finished in the Top 10 for the MVP race 4 times.  Carter was also an instrumental player in helping the 1986 New York Mets win the World Series. 

Marc Hill – A 14-year veteran, Hill played for 4 teams over the duration of his career.  Primarily a back-up, Hill was a serviceable player.  His catching skills were good for a professional player, but his batting skills were not up to par.  Hill has 404 career hits with a lifetime batting average of .223.

Danny Meyer – A solid utility player who played for 3 teams in 12 years, Danny Meyer was a solid contributor over the course of his career.  Meyer logged steady work at first base, third base, and in the outfield.  For his career, Meyer collected 944 hits with 86 home runs, 459 RBI, and a career batting average of .253.

Leon Roberts – Roberts’ career lasted 11 seasons and he played for 5 different teams.  And while he was never able to earn a regular starting role on any of these 5 teams, Roberts was able to contribute pretty well during his playing days.  In 1978 while with the Mariners, Roberts his .301 with 142 hits, 22 home runs, 92 RBI and scoring 78 runs.  Roberts also made 1 appearance in a relief pitching role during the 1984 season with the Kansas City Royals.

‘Same Card, Different Paths’ – Card #4

Same Card, Different Paths – Card #4

1981 Topps – Card #302 – AKA – ‘The Fernando Valenzuela Rookie Card’


Jack Perconte – A 7-year veteran that played for 4 different teams, Perconte had a tough time remaining in the starting line-up for any of the teams he suited up for.  But when he did stay on the field, he excelled.  In 1984 Perconte played in 155 games.  And that year he hit .294 while collecting 180 hits and scoring 93 runs while striking out just 47 times in 688 plate appearances.

Mike Scioscia – Hmmm…  Better player or coach?  Scioscia played for the LA Dodgers for 13 years and was a solid member of the team.  Never the star, Scioscia still earned 2 trips to the All-star game due to his consistently well-rounded play.  As the manager of the LA Angels, he won the World Series in 2002.

Fernando Valenzuela – ‘Fernando-Mania’ was born in 1981 when Valenzuela debuted for the Dodgers at the young age of 20.  In that season, Fernando was An All-Star, a Gold Glove winner, The Rookie of the Year, The Cy Young Award winner, and he also finished 5th in the MVP ballots.  With an incredible run in LA, Valenzuela was a 6-time All-star, and finished in the Top 5 for the CY Young award 3 times(besides his win).  Valenzuela was 173-153 during his career and he won the World Series with the Dodgers in 1981.

‘Same Card, Different Paths’ – Card #3

Same Card, Different Paths – Card #3

1977 Topps – Card #473 – AKA – ‘The Andre Dawson Rookie Card’

dawson rookie

Andre Dawson – Dawson was the complete player, one of the rare ‘5-Tool Players’ to debut during the 1970’s.  His ability to hit for average, hit for speed, run the bases, play defense, and throw quickly put him on par with the sport’s best players.  The 1977 Rookie of the Year and 1987 Most Valuable Player awards highlighted his playing days alongside being an 8-time All-star, 8-time Gold Glove award winner, and 4-time Silver Slugger winner.

Gene Richards – Gene Richards had a solid 8-year career.  A good contact hitter, Richards retired with a career average of .290 alongside 1,028 hits.  His mos notable skill was base stealing.  In his 8-year career, Richards stole 247 bases, and had 4 seasons of 30+ swipes.

John Scott – Scott’s career lasted just 3 years and he only played in 118 games.  With a batting average of just .240, Scott was quickly out of a job and out of the league.

Denny Walling – Denny Walling had an impressive 18-year career in the big leagues.  A talented player with not one clearly defined skill, Walling out up average numbers, but his consistency kept him in the league for close to 2 decades.  With 799 hits, 372 runs scored, 380 RBI, and 49 home runs, Walling was often used as a utility player during his career.

You’ve got to love the old-school logo caps on this card…

‘Same Card, Different Paths’ – Card #2

Same Card, Different Paths – Card #2

1986 Fleer – Card #649 – AKA – ‘The Jose Canseco Rookie Card’

Canseco 86F

Eric Plunk – Plunk’s career lated 14 seasons and he ended up with a 72-58 record during that time.  Used as a starter, middle reliever, and closer over the course of his career, Plunk was a valuable asset to the 4 teams he played for, yet he was never able to latch onto any one roster and become a regular in their pitching rotation. 

Jose Canseco – Canseco will be best known for his off-the-field issues, but his baseball talents cannot be denied.  Canseco was the first player to earn entry into the 40/40 club as he created a new baseball milestone that only elite players have been able to achieve.  Canseco has 462 career home runs and had it not been for a string of injuries late in his career 500 and possibly 600 were in his sights.  He is a former Rookie of the Year, Most Valuable Player, 6-time All-star, 4-time Silver Slugger winner, and 2-time World Series champion.

Mustaches were cheap back in 1986…

‘Same Card, Different Paths’ – Card #1

Same Card, Different Paths – Card #1

1982 Topps – Card #21 – AKA – ‘The Cal Ripken Rookie Card’


Bob Bonner – With a career that lasted 4 seasons, Bonner finihsed his career with a .194 batting average and collected just 21 hits while playing in 61 games.  Bonner had a knack for striking out and sadly never felt the joy of hitting a home run in the major leagues.

Cal Ripken Jr. – A true superstar, Ripken will go down as one the game’s most beloved players.  A consumate professional that never excelled in just 1 area of the game, Ripken has an envyable resume.  With a list of individual accomplishments that is a mile long, Ripken also enjoyed team success as his Orioles team won the 1983 World Series.

Jeff Schneider – Schneider pitched a total of 24 innings in his professional career.  In 11 appearances, he allowed 27 hits and 15 runs while striking out 17 batters and walking 13.  Schneider has a career ERA of 4.88.

Why not start this series off with one of the greatest rookie cards of the last thirty years?  It would be very hard for any player to compete against or measure up to Ripken and what he has done in the game of baseball.  Cal Ripken will go down as one of the most professional player to have ever played the game, and that reputation is one that has been very well earned.

New Series Coming to ’30-YOC’ – ‘Same Card, Different Paths’

Ah, the rookie card. 

I think that each and every type of baseball card collector out there would agree that the rookie card is a huge part of the collecting world.  From set builders to player collectors, and all of us in between, we all hold the rookie card in very high regard!!

My favorite kind of rookie card is the multi-player card.  And back during my collecting days as a kid, the multi-player rookie cards were plentiful!!!

You had rookie cards featuring 2 up-and-coming players…

Rookie 2

Then there were the cards highlighting 3 possible stars in the making…

Rookie 3

And of course you had the good old quad-cards featuring 4 of that year’s top rookies…

Rookie 4

So I thought it would be fun to review and feature some of the best multi-player rookie cards.  And of course I will add a little twist to it too. 

‘Same Card, Different Paths’ is a new series I  will be adding to ’30-Year Old Cardboard’.  I will take 1 multi-player rookie card and breakdown the players featured.

The card may be the same, but the paths these guys took is definitely different….

Stay Tuned.