Category Archives: Sparky Anderson Collection

Baseball Card Show Purchase #2 – Sparky Anderson 2013 Panini Golden Age

Baseball Card Show Purchase #2 – Sparky Anderson 2013 Panini Golden Age

While at the show, I found a seller that had a decent sized stack of cards from this year’s Panini Golden Age set.  I’d seen the cards on the web, but not in person so I was eager to check them out.

Ultimately, the set is not for me.  Some of the cards are nice, but there is not enough baseball-related material in the set for me to get excited about it.  Between the other sports, celebrities, and historical figures – I will pass.

But, I was able to grab this card of Sparky Anderson.  I like the look of the card, but I know it would look better if there was a White ‘C’ on Sparky’s cap!

SHOW 2

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Sparky Anderson 1985 Topps Detroit Tigers Manager Card

Sparky Anderson 1985 Topps Detroit Tigers Manager Card

For as much as I like the 1985 Topps baseball card set, I know that not every card in the set can be a ‘winner’.

So, while I think of all of the 1985 Topps baseball cards that I have scooped up since getting back into the hobby a few years ago, I would say that this card of Tigers skipper, Sparky Anderson, is one that is not a ‘stand-out’ card.

Have a look:

ANDERSON 85T

For me, it is just way too zoomed-in.  And if you’re going to have a card that features a manager, why not show him either in the dugout or on the mound talking to his club?

I can honestly say that I have no clue what the photographer of this shot was trying to capture…

1985 Fleer Super Star Special Featuring Sparky Anderson – ‘Giving The Signs’

1985 Fleer Super Star Special Featuring Sparky Anderson – ‘Giving The Signs’

I have to imagine that watching a manager like Sparky Anderson go through the process of managing a baseball game from the dugout would be an enjoyable experience.

Between the signals, the chatter, the complaining, and the use of multiple pitchers, I would guess that watching him would at times be more entertaining than the game itself.

Luckily, in 1985, Fleer gave us a small glimpse of what that would be like.

Have a look:

SPARKY 4

In today’s sport, we get a lot more activity: pre-game interviews, mid-game interviews, and post-game interviews.

I wonder how a manager like Sparky Anderson would feel about stuff like this??  My guess is that it is not something he would be agreeable to…

Sparky Anderson 1981 Fleer Detroit Tigers Manager Card

Sparky Anderson 1981 Fleer Detroit Tigers Manager Card

For a debut baseball card, I am very impressed with what Fleer gave us with this card of Sparky Anderson.

I am a sucker for cards of players that feature the player waiting in the on-deck circle and when it comes to cards that feature a manager, this one conjures up the same emotion.

Take a look:

SPARKY 1

When it comes to Anderson’s management style, he was called ‘Captain Hook’ for a reason.  He pulled pitchers from what he would call ‘unfavorable’ situations all of the time.  He was known as not being very kind to the emotions of a relief pitcher and he had a knack for yanking poor-performing pitchers in the middle of facing a batter – regardless of the count.

In this image, I imagine that he was getting ready to spring up and make another call to the ‘pen.

Gotta love it!!

Sparky Anderson 1992 Topps Detroit Tigers Manager Card

Sparky Anderson 1992 Topps Detroit Tigers Manager Card

This card of Tigers’ manager Sparky Anders on is way too zoomed in for my liking.  And while I cannot imagine that Sparky was the most accommodating person when it came to taking direction from the photographers, I do think that the person that snapped this shot could have positioned themselves better…

Here is the card:

SPARKY 10

As for the 1992 baseball season, the Tigers did not fare too well with Sparky at the helm.  The team finished in last place in the division with a record of 75-87.  It was a far cry of their 2nd place finish in 1991.

1993 Topps Manager’s Card With Detroit’s Sparky Anderson & Houston’s Art Howe

1993 Topps Manager’s Card With Detroit’s Sparky Anderson & Houston’s Art Howe

Of all of the multi-player cards issued over the years, it is the manager’s card that I care for the least.

Actually – let me say that differently, I REALLY DON’T LIKE THESE MULTI-MANAGER CARDS!!!!

The reason?

The team set!

Imagine yourself as a team collector, a team set builder.

And let’s say that you are working on the 1993 Topps Detroit Tigers team set.

And this is your manager card for the set:

 

SPARKY 11

FAIL!!!!

 

Sparky Anderson 1990 Topps Detroit Tigers Manager Card

Sparky Anderson 1990 Topps Detroit Tigers Manager Card

“Laid back, with my mind on my money and my money on my mind”.

SPARKY 8

Gotta love it!  Of all of the images that Topps could have chosen of Sparky Anderson for their 1990 Topps set, they went with one in which he appears to not really be doing anything at all.

They could have given us one with him chatting with players or arguing with an umpire, but instead we got one of him sitting back, somewhat relaxed.

As for the 1990 baseball season, the Tigers were 79-83 with a .488 win percentage.  They finished in third place in their division in 1990, and I have to guess that capturing Anderson this relaxed during the 1990 season was a rare occurence.