I am way behind on blogging this week, so I am getting around to my Friday Five post for this week a little bit later than I really wanted. Better late than never. This week I am looking at my favorite five baseball card sets from 1992. There are some good ones here, so if you have not dabbled in these card sets they are all easy to find and pretty affordable.
In no particular order, here are the 1992 sets......
1992 Fleer Ultra- I put the Ultra Update set on my Friday Five last week and stated that it was intended to be the Fleer answer to Upper Deck and Stadium Club. I am not really sure that most collectors considered the 1991 set a "premium" product, but the 1992 set definitely had the feel and look of those two established products. While the rookie cards are not that great, think Rod Beck, there are some other really cool cards in this set to chase down outside of picking up a copy of the base set. Fleer also put in an insert set of Tony Gwynn cards, Award Winners, Ultra All-Stars, and All-Rookies. Note Cardinals fans: The All-Rookies set includes Donovan Osborne.
The other highlight of this set is the 2000 Tony Gwynn autographs that were inserted into packs. The cards are not obviously too hard to find, due to the number of cards signed, but the cards can be quite pricy. There are ten different versions of the autograph (they used the Tony Gwynn insert set cards), but I am not sure if there is a premium on any of the versions....
1992 Topps- The 1992 Topps set was kind of the end of an era for Topps. First, the cards were printed on white cardstock. The cards had cleaner edges and corners, but something seems a little bit off with these cards when compared to the Topps sets from the 1980s and early 1990s. The 1992 set was also the last Topps made with a single series. Topps also introduced the Topps Gold card in the 1992 season.
1992 Pinnacle- Every card company made the leap into "premium" cardboard at some point in the early 1990s. The Pinnacle brand was Score's feature into that card market. If I had to rank these sets this week this could easily end up near the top of the list. The set has rookie cards of Manny Ramirez, Jeff Kent, and Snorting Bull favorite Brian Jordan. Pinnacle also had even more anti-fraud gizmos than Upper Deck. Bar codes on the card could be unscrambled to spell out Pinnacle...I am not sure why someone would want to counterfeit these cards......Seriously, the black edges of the cards make finding nice copies of these cards really difficult. The high grades on these cards have a low population, so nice raw copies can sell well depending on the card. See Manny Ramirez.
1992 Bowman- Rivera, Manny, Piazza, Trevor Hoffman, and Carlos Delgado all have rookie cards in this product. What do most people think of when they hear the brand name of Bowman? Rookie Cards. While the 1992 Topps set started moving the flagship brand away from their traditional base set, the Bowman cards were coming into their own. Over time the size and design of the Bowman set has changed, but this was the first year that the product really focused in on young players. On top of having the set focus on young players, which worked well in 1991, the 1992 set was printed on the same card stock as the Stadium Club set and also featured the popular foil short prints. If you had to own one 1992 set it should be this one. However, this set is the one product on this list that is not necessarily a cheap buy.
1992 Stadium Club Dome- This set is worth buying just for all of the cool pictures of Major League Baseball players wearing high school uniforms or paisley shorts. All sorts of good early 90s fashion statements in here. Originally packaged as a 1991 product, the set is generally recognized as a 1992 product by collectors. Probably because the set was released in March of 1992 after the 1992 Stadium Club set had been released. This product was sold as a set and packaged in a thin plastic model of the SkyDome. This set is really inexpensive and totally worth it. See Manny Ramirez in front of Duke Chapel.