Daily Archives: March 24, 2014

2014 Topps Series 1 “Topps All Rookie Cup Team” – Johnny Bench

2014 Topps Series 1 “Topps All Rookie Cup Team” – Johnny Bench

Topps’ All-Rookie Team means a lot of different things to a lot of different collectors.  But, one thing is for certain – If your card is tagged with the All-Rookie Team logo, you did something during your first season in the big leagues to make yourself stand out from the rest.

And for that reason alone, I can totally support a set of cards that picks ‘The Best Of The Best’ from these teams.

In 2014, Topps issued a subset in their Series 1 release that took one player at each position, naming them to the ‘Topps All Rookie Cup Team’.

Representing the catcher is Johnny Bench:

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While he debuted in 1967, Johnny Bench truly burst on to the scene in 1968.  At just 20-years old, Bench anchored the Reds defense by playing in 154 games.  His skill was immediate – he won the Gold Glove award during his first full-time season.  He as also an All-Star with his .275 batting average, 40 doubles, 15 home runs, and 82 RBI.

Bench won the 1968 NL Rookie Of The Year Award as he captured 10.5 of the 20.0 votes cast.

Joe Morgan 2014 Topps ’89 Mini Die-Cut

Joe Morgan 2014 Topps ’89 Mini Die-Cut

You have no idea how excited I was to see Joe Morgan’s name on the 1989 Mini Die Cut checklist from this year’s flagship release.

I love seeing legends presented on card designs that they were not originally a part of – and Morgan on the 1989 design qualifies.

So, I shopped and shopped as soon as the set was released.  And I was able to land one at a pretty affordable price.

It’s just too bad that the card uses an image we have seen too many times..

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Do I like it?  Yes.

Would I like it even more if the card featured a new image or one that is not used as often as this one?  Yes, Yes, Yes.

1975 Topps Set Card 54/660 – #444 – Gene Garber, Phillies

1975 Topps Set Card 54/660 – #444 – Gene Garber, Phillies

Progress: 54/660

Player Name:  Gene Garber

Card Number:  444

Team:  Philadelphia Phillies

Position:  Pitcher

Image Style:  Posed Portrait

Years In The Major Leagues:  19 seasons, 1969-70, 1972-88

Notes From His 1975 Season:   Garber appeared in a league high 71 games as a pitcher in 1975.  Of his 71 appearances, he finished the game 47 times.  In total, he compiled a 10-12 record with 14 saves.

Notes From Career:  Garber suited up for four different teams in his 19-year career.  He compiled a 96-113 record with 218 saves and an ERA of 3.34.  In 1510 innings of work, Garber struck out 940 batters while walking 445.

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Dustin Pedroia 2009 Upper Deck SP Legendary Cuts

Dustin Pedroia 2009 Upper Deck SP Legendary Cuts

I have always been a big fan of this card design.  I just wish that more of the players that I actively collect were included in the set.

Thankfully, Dustin Pedroia is in the set.  And now, I have the card:

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The design screams vintage, and I love the color tones that were used by Upper Deck and I really like the Golden ‘SP’ badge that is front and center.

I’d love cards of this design theme that feature Andrew McCutchen, Giancarlo Stanton, Bryce Harper, or Jose Fernandez.

But, at least I got Pedroia!!

Adrian Beltre 2014 Topps Series 1 Subset – ‘Super Veterans’

Adrian Beltre 2014 Topps Series 1 Subset – ‘Super Veterans’

When I got back into the hobby of baseball card collecting in the summer of 2008, my goal was to pay homage to the players that helped build my love for the game and the hobby.

The first subset I put together that helped me with that cause was the ‘Super Veterans’ subset from the 1983 Topps baseball card set.  This set is a beauty and it highlights the true legends of the game as their careers were winding down.

For the last few years, I have actively been begging Topps to bring this subset back and pay honor to today’s ‘Super Veterans’.  And while I cannot confirm that they obliged my request, I was very excited to see that a 15-card ‘Super Veterans’ subset was part of the 2014 Topps Series 1 release.

I am building the set now.  Here is the card of Adrian Beltre:

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Entering the 2014 baseball season, Adrian Beltre will begin his 17th big league season.  He is a 3-time All-Star and has won 4 Gold Glove awards and 3 Silver Slugger trophies.

Beltre has 2,426 career hits to his credit, including 376 home runs and 495 doubles.  He has scored 1,177 runs and driven in 1,307.  Beltre has a career slugging percentage of .478 and an OPS of .812.

Beltre has competed in one World Series match-up, but lost in seven games.