’30-YOC Top Ten Lists’ – Top Ten Oddball Brands From My Youth

’30-YOC Top Ten Lists’ – Top Ten Oddball Brands From My Youth

As a player collector, I am always on the prowl to add new cards of my favorite players into the collections that I am building for them.

Sometimes that goal is easy, and sometimes it is very difficult.  With modern sets, and the number of parallel versions of cards issued in nearly all sets, the goal is easy.  But with vintage issues, it is a bit tougher – so I turn to the oddball sets.

So, before I show off my ‘Top Ten Oddball Sets’, let me explain my definition of an oddball set.  For me, the set must truly be odd – like, why on earth would company X be issuing baseball cards. And the more that the pairing of said company and baseball cards is, the more oddball, and the more that I likey.

With all of that being said, I have provided my ‘Top Ten’ list below.  And I took it a step further by researching how these cards were obtainable (I was able to find the facts on 9/10).

And now it is time – sit back and relax and enjoy ‘Top Ten Oddball Brands From My Youth’:

Honorable Mention – MooTown Snackers, K-Mart, McDonald’s, Ralston Purina, Nestle, Starting Line-Up, Denny’s, King-B, and Post Cereal.

10 – True Value – 30 card set that could be bought at True Value hardware stores with any $5 purchase

9 – KayBee Toys – box set sold exclusively through Kay-Bee toy stores

8 – Jimmy Dean – could not find any info on how these were distributed

7 – Duracell – 48 card set was available through a mail-in process that required Duracell proof of purchase UPC codes

6 – M&M’s – 24 card set that was inserted into large M&M packages

5 – Jumbo Sunflower Seeds – 3 cards were randomly inserted into special packages of Jumbo Sunflower Seeds

4 – Cap’n Crunch Cereal – 24 card set in which two cards and a stick of gum were inserted into specially marked boxes of Cap’n Crunch cereal

3 – Hostess – 32 card set that was inserted into boxes of Twinkies and Hostess cupcakes

2 – Drakes – 33 card sets inserted into Drake’s bakery treats

1 – Kellogg’s – single cards were inserted into Kellogg’s cereal boxes and the entire set was available through a mail-in order process

Wow, that really took me back to my youth.  I have a decent amount of these kinds of cards in my collection today.  They cards are such a nice extension to the collections that I have put together that would normally only feature the major brands.

Did I miss any sets that you like?  Which oddball brands do you  have memories of as a kid?  Which one is your favorite?

Let me hear it.

10 responses to “’30-YOC Top Ten Lists’ – Top Ten Oddball Brands From My Youth

  1. One of my favorites was the Toys R Us “Rookies” set. It was only produced for 3 or 4 years, but I still remember it well. The same design every year, but the border color changed.

  2. I liked the Post/Jello cards in the early 1960s, that you cut off the back of a box of cereal or Jell-O. (Until the box was empty, you could entertain yourself at the breakfast table by reading the box.)

  3. What about Mother’s Cookies or Smokey the Bear cards? You really can’t go wrong with the 1987 Smokey the Bear day cards, featuring one player from each team posed with Smokey the Bear. And not just any players, but semi-stars, like Steve Bedrosian, Mike Scott, Jody Davis, a very young Jose Canseco and a quite old Steve Garvey. Now that’s an oddball brand set worth remembering.

  4. Big fan of the Quaker Chewy Granola Bars cards in the mid-80’s. Not sure how many years they may have put a set out, but I had plenty of these:

  5. Oddly, I just posted today about one of my all time favorite oddball retail box sets: http://startingnine.blogspot.com/2012/09/complete-set-sunday-strange-things-are.html

  6. The Jimmy Dean cards were found in boxes of frozen sausage biscuits. I got a few of them that way. And a correction for the 1993 Hostess, they were not packaged with Twinkies and Cup Cakes, they were exclusive to the hybrid Hostess Baseballs product, which was basically a Cup Cake shaped Twinkie with baseball frosting (instead of the usual brown with white piping).

  7. My favorite two weren’t mentioned: the 7-11 Slurpee Coins and the Topps Mini cards found in Cracker Jack boxes ( I remember the 1991 cards being in boxes but not others). Out of the ones mentioned Drake’s and Kellogg’s definitely had the best cards!

  8. Louisville Slugger had an awesome set that ran for about a decade from the early 1980s to the early 1990s. The front design was real nice and the backs were very informative. Hard to find then without the hole punched out to hang on the gloves but worth the search.

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