Daily Archives: May 3, 2013

Eric Davis ‘Fab Five’ – Card #1 – 1988 Topps Glossy All-Star Send-In

Eric Davis ‘Fab Five’ – Card #1 – 1988 Topps Glossy All-Star Send-In

Now that my Eric Davis player collection is complete, it is time to show of my favorite five cards from the set.

Card #1 – 1988 Topps Glossy All-Star Send-In

DAVIS FAB 1

As you all know, my preference is to collect the players that impacted my love for the game during my youth.  That also means celebrating the baseball cards from that time.

One of the unique things that Topps did back in the 1980 was offer the chance to obtain limited edition cards and sets of cards that could only be purchased directly through them.  Tagged as ‘Send-In’ sets, you had to send in wrappers from the packs you opened as well as a small shipping and handling fee for the cards – but it was well worth it.

The Send-In cards offered a very unique look for a Topps baseball card.  They actually had a postcard vibe to them with their glossy fronts and cardboard-textured backs.  And while the design of the backs were extremely limited, the fronts were superb!!!

Great images, clear photos, and bright colors!!!

Florida Marlins 2002 Upper Deck ’40 Man’ Team Set

Florida Marlins 2002 Upper Deck ’40 Man’ Team Set

You may recall that the Marlins team set that I showed off last week was donated by one of my longtime readers and fellow bloggers, Unclemoe.

Well, Moe actually sent me two new team sets for my collection.

And while the first one I showed off featured what can be tagged as a standard sized set, this one here is definitely not in that category.

In McDonald’s terms – this one is ‘Super Sized’.

The set is 40 cards deep!!!

It took me a while to get all of the scanning done, but I had to show off the entire 40-card set to properly do the set justice.

So, here goes:

2002 UP 40 MAN A

2002 UP 40 MAN B

2002 UP 40 MAN C

2002 UP 40 MAN D

2002 UP 40 MAN E

I told you – it is as full as a team set could be!!!

As you can see above, the set is primarily built with posed, studio portraits of the team.  And with the exception of a few former Cubs that had not yet had shots done in their Marlins gear, the set offers a very nice flow to it.

And then just for kicks, there are a few action-packed subset cards included to help round out the set and get the count up to forty cards.

Thank you Unclemoe – A fantastically grand addition to my ‘Marlins Team Set’ project.

Eddie Murray 2008 Playoff Prime Cuts – #212/249

Eddie Murray 2008 Playoff Prime Cuts – #212/249

Of all of the players that I really wish had never left their original teams, Eddie Murray ranks very high on that list.

For me, Eddie Murray is an Oriole – and nothing else.

After completing my Player Collection of Murray a few years ago, I made a silent vow to only allow cards of Murray into my collection that include him wearing his Orange, Black, and White.

You will not find me showing off cards of Mr. Murray while wearing the uniform of the Indians, Dodgers, or Mets.

Thankfully, many of the modern cards of him allow me to still go after them.

So, it was OK when I recently scooped this one up, and it is a beauty that is serial numbered as 212/249.

Have a look:

VINTAGE MIRRAY

The card comes from the 2008 Playoff Prime Cuts set, and while you cannot really make out the Silver logo in the upper right corner, it is a pretty sweet accent to the card.

Gotta love that swing!!!

Vince Coleman 1991 Bowman – Back To Square One…

Vince Coleman 1991 Bowman

I was excited when Bowman baseball cards made a comeback in 1989.

And as we all know, the 1989 set offered us a lot of posed portrait imagery.  But in 1990, the cards started to offer more variety in the images chosen for the set, including some pretty impressive action shots.

And then they his us, and Vince Coleman, with this:

COLEMAN 11

His 1991 Bowman card takes us right back to 1989.  Right back to ‘Square One’.

 

1980 HEADLINE: Willie McCovey Homers For The Last Time Of His Major League Career

1980 HEADLINE: Willie McCovey Homers For The Last Time Of His Major League Career

On this day in 1980, slugger Willie McCovey hit the final home run of his amazing career. Spanning 22 years, McCovey blasted 521 round-trippers during his playing days. His 521 ranks on the all-time list at 18th place in major league history.

The shot, a blast off of Expos’ hurler Scott Sanderson, came in the 4th inning of the ballgame and was the difference in the Giant’s 3-2 win that day.

Happy Anniversary Mr. McCovey!!

Hall Of Fame Debate: Cast Your Vote For Dwight ‘Doc’ Gooden!!!

Hall Of Fame Debate: Cast Your Vote For Dwight ‘Doc’ Gooden!!!

You’re going to think that I am nuts with this one, but that is alright – I can take it.

My passion for baseball began in the mid-1980’s and was in full-stride well before my tenth birthday.  First, I enjoyed playing the sport casually to then playing competitively.  I enjoyed catching a few innings of baseball on television to making sure that I was home for Braves and Mets games on cable.  And I went from thinking that baseball cards were cool to becoming enthralled with them.

In my thirty years of being a pretty devout baseball fan, I have seen some amazingly talented young guys hoist the sport on their backs during their debut season in the big leagues.

From Ken Griffey, Jr. to Hideo Nomo.  From Nomar Garciaparra to Ichiro Suzuki.  And most recently from Mike Trout to Bryce Harper.  All amazing ballplayers and all deserving of the huge amounts of attention sent their way.

But, NO player in my time as a fan has captivated fans, players, and the sport during their rookie seasons at the level that Dwight Gooden did.

At 19-years of age, Dwight Gooden broke into the game of baseball and became the sport’s best player and showcase talent.  He did it in the wildest and most crazed city of them all – New York.  And he smiled and dominated every step of the way.

No other rookies during my time as a fan have appeared on multiple national sports publications, or on the cover of nationwide periodicals like Time Magazine like Dwight Gooden did.

With the exception of Ken Griffey Jr, no player during his rookie season was able to attract new fans to the world of baseball card collecting – but Gooden did.

In his first three seasons of professional baseball, Dwight Gooden won 58 games and lost just 19.  He had an ERA of 2.32 over those three seasons and he struck out 744 men as well.  He literally put the New York Mets on his back and led them to the playoffs, ultimately winning the World Series in 1986, and along the way, he earned the nicknames of ‘Doc’ and ‘Dr. K’ for the manner in which he dissected his opposition.  He was an All-Star, a Rookie Of The Year, A Cy Young Award winner.  And he was on his way to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Dwight Gooden was impossible to ignore, regardless of the team you were cheering for.  If ‘Doc’ was pitching, it was going to be a show.

Dwight Gooden photo

We all know about Gooden’s issues that lead to his demise – both on and off of the field.  They have been documented repeatedly and have followed him around well after his playing days ended.

And to be honest, I don’t really care.  Sure, I would love for him to have been squeaky clean – I’d like for all of the athletes that I enjoy watching to be that way.  But, I am a realist – I understand that everyone has demons, and Gooden’s were just played out in the public eye because of his very high-profile job.

Still, his major league baseball career was incredible – 194-112 record, 63.4 win percentage, 3.51 career ERA, 68 complete games, 24 shutouts, 1 no-hitter.  Gooden has a career average of 7.4 strikeouts per nine innings and a K:Walk ratio of 2.40:1.0.

Gooden appeared on the Hall of Fame ballot for the first time in 2006.  He was only named on 17 ballot’s earning him just 3.3% of the vote.  His vote tally of less than 5% of votes cast ensured that he would not be on future Hall of Fame ballots.

But, you know what – I’d vote for him.  I think that Dwight Gooden, and all that he offered baseball, is a good thing for a museum like the Baseball Hall of Fame.  I know from first-hand experience that he changed the landscape of baseball card collecting and he thrilled baseball fans all around the world each and every time he went to the mound during the early parts of his career.

I was  too young to experience and understand what ‘Fernando-Mania’ was all about in 1981.  And I was born right after Fred Lynn dominated the entire American League in 1975.

But, I was around and I have tons of memories of ‘The Birth Of Dr.K’.

And if I had my say, he would have a spot in Cooperstown.  Maybe not on the same wall as Babe Ruth and Henry Aaron and Stan Musial.  But his popularity and the attention that he brought to the sport during his era can certainly rival those gentlemen.

Chime in on Dwight Gooden’s impact on the game.  Does a player like Gooden, or players like Gooden, deserve to have a spot in Cooperstown?

I’m eager to see what you have to say!!!

Gavel