In sorting out my 2002 sets I have found that several of the sets look like they could have been another product from that same brand. Almost as if the card company had two design ideas for a card product, rejected one, and then still made a set out of the losing card design. In so many ways the Fall Classics set looks like a failed design concept for the Greats of the Game line. In fact, this design is really pretty close to the 2005 Greats of the Game set. The cards in Fall Classics however do focus on the great players from postseason play and not necessarily the greats of the game. Two separate groups of people. Still there are plenty of big names in the set:
There are two features of this set which I really like and made it an enjoyable set to spend half an hour of my afternoon flipping through. First, the backs of the cards post the players postseason statistics for their career. Not unheard of with baseball cards, but certainly gives you a different view of some players. Here's a look at the back of the Bambino.
The other cool thing, as previously mentioned, is the fact that Fleer put in players who were good postseason performers. There are plenty of players who have been able to find a few moments during the postseason to play their best games and sometimes the kind of slip through the cracks. Many baseball fans can tell you plenty about the World Series rings won by greats like Babe Ruth and Stan Musial, but they had plenty of help along the way. So, I decided while I was flipping through the set to pick out three good, but not great players, who have made a big impact on the postseason during my lifetime (Please not they had to have a card in the set-Big Papi is not in the set)
Depending who you ask, Trammell could be considered great, so I am putting him third on my list. He only appeared in the postseason twice in 1984 and 1987. The 1984 team won the World Series and was perhaps on the most dominate teams of the past thirty years. Basically the Tigers lead the American League from Game 1 through Game 162 and then bludgeoned the Royals and Padres to win the World Series. Trammell hit .364 in the ALCS and then batted .400 in the World Series winning the MVP.
At times Porter was a great player, but there were a lot of distractions around Darrell's career. Go read up, I am not rehashing it. Porter had several appearances during his career in postseason play with the Royals and Cardinals. However, he played a key role in the Cardinals winning the 1982 series against the Brewers and took home the World Series MVP. Kind of cool to see him recognized on cardboard for his great postseason play.
Last one. I could have gone Gibson here, but basically the two biggest postseason home runs hit during my lifetime belonged to Kirk Gibson and Joe Carter. The Gibson one was cool, but it was at the end of the first game. Joe Carter's walked off a series. That has not happened too often. So, you've probably seen it a few hundred times, but it never gets old. Great call on the play too...
"Touch 'em all Joe you'll never hit a bigger home run in your life"