(This is the 13th in our series of posts about the best baseball cards from the 1980s. Check out the rest of those posts here.)

All I can say when it comes to picking the best baseball card from 1984 Topps is, darn you Carlton Fisk!

And Gary Carter!

And Bob Brenly, Steve Lake, and other Major League Baseball catchers of the time.

They all have cards that look great in this set. Like baseball personified.

But as I’ve lamented before, one of my goals with this series on the best card from each 1980s base set is to not repeat players and to not repeat patterns (too often, at least).

Carter and Fisk already have their entries, and catchers run the risk of piledriving the whole show, so I need to put on my receiver blinders — my own tools of ignorance — and move forward.

Truth be told, 1984 Topps was never my favorite set. Aside from all the all-time leaders and highlights cards, the awesome purple backs, and a few select guys like Mike Schmidt, Pete Rose, and Don Mattingly (rookie!), I could walk past a table full without feeling too guilty.

1984 Topps Robin Yount

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But when I ran through a bunch of them again for this post, I was surprised at how much really good stuff is here.

Some of that “really good” …

That Meacham card has been a favorite of mine since it first sparkled at me from a fresh wax pack back in 1984. Such great action and colors, and a chance to learn about a player I hadn’t encountered before. What could be better?

And, truthfully, I went into this thinking Meacham might be my pick here, but …

I forgot about Robin Yount (shame on me!).

I forgot how he won the 1982 American League MVP award as his Milwaukee Brewers played all the way to the seventh game of the World Series before bowing to the St. Louis Cardinals.

I forgot how we all sort of forgot about Yount, just a bit, after that big season as the Brewers slid back into obscurity and Yount slipped to mere superstar levels.

For instance, Yount finished 18th in voting for the 1983 MVP award and didn’t even make the All-Star team in 1984.

Meanwhile, fans and collectors were on to hotter properties like Strawberry, Don Mattingly, Wade Boggs, Cal Ripken, and Dwight Gooden.

Of course, even though he wasn’t all that exciting any more, Yount had plateaued at a really high level, and he stayed there for years.

The next time we looked up from our hype, Yount was winning the 1989 AL MVP award, this time as a centerfielder instead of his customary place at shortstop.

We started paying attention then, because, all of the sudden, Yount looked like a good bet for 3000 hits and serious Cooperstown consideration.

1984 Topps Robin Yount (back)

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So we did what we always do when a superstar or Hall of Famer sneaks up on us — we went back through the card files and started pulling his forgotten pasteboards.

And one of those Yount cards that really pops when you see it again is his 1984 Topps issue.

Here we have a primetime Yount trodding his home turf at short and pointing to the sky out of frame to our left, on the third-base side. Can’t you just imagine a youngish Paul Molitor over there clamping down for the out?

As for Yount, even though he’s just in commander mode, he’s all action and athleticism, lean and outstretched as he is. His trademark curls flow from under his Brewers cap, and his iconic number 19 flashes in the Milwaukee sunshine.

It’s a brilliant shot, set off perfectly by the card’s powder blue accents and the Brewers logo so evident on Yount’s headshot.

Is there a better card in the 1984 Topps set?

I won’t begrudge you if you say yes, but keep in mind that you just may be wrong.

(This is the 13th in our series of posts about the best baseball cards from the 1980s. Check out the rest of those posts here.)

 

 

 

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