I Told You It Was The Year of Vintage
January 23rd, 2010 by slangon

I did not decide that it was the Year of Vintage. It is apparently just fated that way.

Yesterday, after I had gotten done mentioning that I was declaring this The Year of Vintage, I had to run out a do a couple of errands. I was heading over by the local Target, so I figured I would grab me a blaster of that there 2010 Topps that’s been popping up recently. Aside from being curious as to how the base cards look in person, I was very interested in pulling some of them ’51 Red Back inserts. When I got there, there was no 2010 Topps to be found. Curses. Foiled again. I was able to fight the temptation to buy some other cards just for the sake of buying cards and left empty handed.

Instead, I figured I would head on down to the local card shop to pick up some pages for a pile of odd sized cards I’d been meaning to file for a while. I’ve sort of dogged on this card shop a bit in the past for being expensive, but it’s close and they’re actually pretty cheap when it comes to supplies. So I get there, find almost all the odd sized pages I need (what the hell page do you use to store a 4″ diameter round card?), and walk over to the counter to pay. I decided that since I was here I would rummage through the 15 for $5 Mets box and see if there was anything worth while. As I was starting to look through it, though, I happened to espy another box that I never saw before. Upon it was written “Vintage, $1 Each or $5 for 6”. Hmmm, that sounds intriguing. Maybe before I blow $5 on a bunch of early 2000 Mets cards I should take a gander over there.

Boy am I glad I did. I ended up taking that $20 I was going to use for that 2010 blaster and spending it here instead. That netted me 24 cards. Let’s see what I got in place of whatever I would’ve pulled from that blaster?

That ’57 Steve Gromek is officially the oldest Topps card I own, which is pretty cool. Next is a pair of ’60 Topps. I’ve wanted a card from that set ever since I saw the ’09 Heritage cards, and I especially love that Pumpsie Green card. The All-Star Rookies from that set look incredible, and how can you not love a dude named Pumpsie? Historical side note: The Red Sox were the last Major League club to integrate, which they did in 1959 by bringing up a young switch-hitting infielder named Pumpsie Green. I don’t really know to much about those next two fellows, but I must say 1968 is probably my least favorite of all ’60’s sets. I’m not sure what that texture on the frame is supposed to be, but I don’t like it. Not by a long shot. That 1968 Game Insert is kind of cool, though. I wonder if some eccentric card collector has ever gotten a complete vintage set and invites his buddies over to play what game it is you play with them?

I’ve always loved these old time League Leader cards. To me it seems an easy, affordable way to get cards of awesome players. Most times, you end up with multiple awesome players on one card, which is even more awesome. I guess not in this case, though. On the back of this card they list probably the top 30 or so ERA’s from 1968. What’s sick is that Jerry Koosman had a 2.08 ERA and he didn’t make the League Leader card. Other genres of cards I love are World Series cards and cards that look like newspapers. That Tigers card is cool because it has the complete World Series box score on the back. I also very much enjoy All-Star cards. I think they were so much cooler back in the day when they were The Sporting News All-Stars. This is the second ’69 Deckle Edge insert I’ve obtained in the last few weeks. I got this just because I recently saw this clip about Rick Monday. Stupid hippies. And speaking of hippies, how could I pass up a card of Dock Ellis from the year of the LSD no hitter?

Here’s another wacky Topps insert from back in the day. It’s a 1971 Lou Piniella Scratch Off. And, no, it’s not scratched off. I actually did not recognize this as Lou Piniella when I first saw this card. Interesting thing I learned from that ’73 Bob Gibson card: Bob is a basketball commentator on television. Who knew? I’m sure I’ve mentioned before that manager cards are a little infatuation of mine, especially when it’s a Hall of Famer. I also really like the manager silhouette on these ’73 cards. I also like cards that feature not one, but two Hall of Famers, like that Willie McCovey with Johnny Bench in the foreground. I’m not sure why exactly, but I’ve wanted that Hank Aaron special for a long time, and now I have it. Is it just me or did Topps use the same picture of Hank on his ’68 and ’69 cards? Interesting thing I learned from this ’74 Lou Brock: He owns and operates a flower-shop during the off-season. Whaaaa?

How could I pass up a Fred Lynn rookie? Do you know his name is misspelled on his MVP trophy, which he won the year this card came out? Next up is the only Met card I bought, but it’s the Franchise, so that’s okay. Yet another card genre I’m a sucker for is cards that have old-timey players on them, especially when the card depicting the old-timey player is a little bit old -timey itself. And we round out the haul with some 1978 cards. Wasn’t there a Simpsons where Milhouse wanted to buy a Carl Yastrzemski card with big sideburns? I wonder if this is the one. Lou Brock looks much meaner in 1978 than he did in 1974. I wonder why? Finally, I’m a little perplexed at this Dale Murphy “rookie”. He also had a rookie card in 1977, so what’s the deal with this?

All in all, I gotta say, that $20 was so much better spent than if I had gotten that blaster. 24 cards, all pre-1980. 14 depicting Hall of Famers. 3 border-line Hall of Famers. I will be a Hall of Famer. 3 rookie cards. 3 wacky inserts. 2 All-Stars. A record breaker. A league leader. A World Series card. And a Hank Aaron Special. Needless to say, I will be hitting that box again, hopefully soon.

5 Responses to “I Told You It Was The Year of Vintage”

  1. You did great. Cool cards there.

  2. All that for $20!?! Damn, you scored big. Some REALLY nice pick ups in there. Well done!

  3. It’s always nice to drop $20 on cards and not have that “why the hell did I do that” feeling. Vintage is definitely the way to go!

  4. sweet. well done.

  5. I need to print this post out and carry it with me when I go to the store. When I’m in the card aisle, tempted to violate my new year’s resolution not to buy any blasters, I will pull this post out and read it and save myself from certain disappointment.

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