Sunday, January 1, 2017

A Venerable Old Card Part 39

I have spent a little bit of time this week off from work sorting out a few different sets from the mid 1980s.  Since there were not very many, you'd think it would go quickly, but it has actually been a little slow.  Some of the sets I have multiple copies, Tiffany and non-Tiffany cards mixed up, and all sorts of other conundrums.  There were a few sets that were really easy to put together.  One in particular caught my eye.

I say ugliest baseball cards, most people who lived through the 1990s say.......


1991 Fleer.  I know a few people who feel differently, but this set almost universally is at least in many collector's list of bad sets.  I'd like to point out that I also picked out Tino Martinez, but he's not hitting into a double play on this card.  

So, it turns out that Topps made sort of a pre-curser to the 1991 Fleer set five years earlier.  I found this Willie McGee card in a box of random Cardinals commons.  The yellow border.....


the header and other design features are different from the 1991 Fleer, but yellow borders.  I can't really take a picture of the finish, but these cards actually are really glossy.  Nicer than the mid 1980s Tiffany cards, probably closer to the mail-in Glossy cards from Topps, but this card might even have a nicer finish than those cards too.  I sat here at my desk and held the cards in my hand for a few minutes trying to decide.  

The back of the cards are actually worse than the 1991 Fleer cards.  Fleer cards kind of had that standard back design with some slight variations.  This Topps card has almost nothing on the back....


Home runs on a 1980s Cardinals baseball card?  Ha.  Where are the stolen bases?  Runs scored?  Much more important to the Cardinals winning a lot of games.  So, where did this card come from?  

I did a little digging and found out that it was a part of a box set that was sold at Woolworths at some point in 1986.  Funny thing is, and I was like a third grader or so at this point, I don't ever remember going to a Woolworths.  Where there even Woolworths in St. Louis in 1986?  No idea.  


The picture of the box is not mine, I found it online while trying to find information about the set.  I was pretty much only into opening packs of cards as a kid,    It had occurred to me that I might have just ended up with the McGee card out of a dime box at a card show or shop, but I actually have all 33 cards.  All of them are spectacularly yellow and bright.  

McGee is the only Cardinals player in the set, so he was my choice for this post.  If you can get past the yellow, there are some great 1980s baseball names in this small set.  




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