Month: October 2017

From the Corner Store to Twitter, with Love: David Gourlay’s Collecting Story

(Read all of our collector stories here. Want to share your own story? Let me know!) It’s the idealized picture of the hobby that so many of us hold of dear, a picture we hope to recapture every time we pick up a rectangle of cardboard … A preteen boy hops on his bike and rides down to the corner store to plunk down whatever change he could scrape together for a pack or two of baseball cards. He rips open the wax wrappers right there in parking lot, one knee propped on his bike, and jams the sharp...

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High Five: How the 1978 Topps Glenn Burke Rookie Card Lied to Us

There is nothing about the 1978 Topps Glenn Burke rookie card that would make you think its subject was capable of creating a cultural phenomenon. But it does stand out. That 1978 set is full of odd or just bad images — a giant, scowling Mike Schmidt head; Rick Monday scratching his face; Greg Minton and Mike Paxton painted onto the fronts of their cards; Dave Kingman sticking his face through one of those “You Can Be a Cub!” photo props. It was against this backdrop that I first encountered the Burke card. It was probably 1984 or 1985, and...

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Charlie Hough Was a True Diamond King in 1987

(If you like a little trivia with your baseball cards, check out the rest of this series here.) If you were to list out the top pitchers of the 1980s, chances are Charlie Hough wouldn’t even cross your mind. And if you were to stack up all of the pitching records that you consider to be unbreakable, nothing that Charlie Hough did on a Major League mound would make it to within 60 feet and six inches of your short list. But if you wanted to build a staff of underrated hurlers from the pre-steroid era who pitched in your lifetime (probably) and who...

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1989 Topps Baseball Cards – The Ultimate Guide

If you ever wanted to know what a “too big to fail” attitude looks like in cardboard form, flip through an album of 1989 Topps baseball cards someday. By the time the Old Gum Company’s 38th full set hit store shelves that Spring, collectors were bracing for big changes, expecting big improvements. Upper Deck had released their first promo cards — of DeWayne Buice and Wally Joyner — in the summer of 1988, and hobbyists were drooling at the thought of  an entire set with such a clean design and crystal clear photos. And holograms! The inaugural base UD issue...

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How Dusty Baker Helped the 1977 Los Angeles Dodgers Make History

(If you like a little trivia with your baseball cards, check out the rest of this series here.) On the last day of the 1977 season, Los Angeles Dodgers left fielder Dusty Baker stepped into the batter’s box against Houston Astros fireballer J.R. Richard in the sixth inning of a game that meant nothing for the standings. The Dodgers had long ago won the old National League West but they were too far behind the Philadelphia Phillies to win any sort of bragging rights for the best overall record. But there was a snatch of history on the line as Baker took...

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