Archive | April, 2020

1990 Topps Frank Thomas NNOF August 1995 Beckett Write-Up: 25 Years Later

30 Apr

A quick look at two pages from the August 1995 Beckett Baseball Magazine outlining the most up-to-date info on the card at the time. The ‘Readers Write’ letter is interesting to me as it tackles the big question surrounding the legitimacy of this printing error vs. others and the generally accepted hypocrisy applied to it. Also noticeable is how their example does not contain the tiny piece of Frank’s name commonly (but not always) found on the iconic print flaw. Theo Chen’s estimation of 500 to 1000 and possibly even “less than 100” copies is laughable 25 years later. While truly a needle-in-a-haystack card, far more than 1000 copies have surfaced since.

Bonus: January 1994 NNOF Pricing

Cards You’ve Never Seen: 1990 Upper Deck No Position On Front Promos/Proofs

29 Apr

Take a look at this interesting print ad for 1990 Upper Deck baseball. In the foreground are a handful of cards, oddly enough, all from the 101-199 sequence (the missing copyright affected sequence), showing no position in the upper left corner box. Ken Griffey Jr, Bo Jackson, Barry Larkin among other highly collected players. I can only imagine what kind of money these likely-unproduced variations would bring today. What’s also interesting is that the cards in Reggie Jackson’s hand appear to be printed with their positions.

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Quick Look: 1991 Pro Set ‘Special Promotional Sample’ Stamped Promo Cards

28 Apr

My memory may be off but I am fairly certain that I was given one of these stamped 1991 Pro Set cards upon visiting their booth at the 1991 National Collector’s Convention in Anaheim. I want to say it was Randall Cunningham’s base card. Or maybe Jeff George. All I know is that I was disappointed it wasn’t Emmitt or something more “valuable.” In the years since I have only seen a handful of these cards pop up. The image below of Rocket Ismail’s card was one I found in a box of various early 90s “hot” cards in sleeves, picked up at a thrift store in Van Nuys, CA. As of now, it is impossible to say whether Pro Set stamped the entire series one set or just certain players and exactly how many of each were issued. I do not believe that any more than two copies of any player have been confirmed. Because of their non-descript fronts, I turn over every 1991 Pro Set single I find mixed with other promo/oddball/hot cards of the time.

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1990 Pro Set Football Advertisements: Spot The Oddities

28 Apr

For several years of my Pro Set collecting I would purchase used copies of just about every hobby magazine I could get my hands on, clipping out letters from readers, advertisement for error-laded products and long-forgotten product info that may or may not have made it to the final version released to the hobby. One of my favorite finds were 1990 Pro Set NFL (and NHL) ads, with all of their mockup glory. Below are a few pages of ads for their 1990 series one and two offerings. How many promos, proofs, oddities can you spot?

 

Quick Look: 1991 Topps Desert Storm Norman Schwarzkopf “Smiling” Photo Variation

25 Apr

This card was only recently checked off my list after nearly 15 years of sporadic hunting for it. For an image of it even! For me, this niche corner of the hobby is like fishing: I find out about, learn about, hear whispers of a variation and I chase after it but I have no intention of keeping. This card is a perfect example. Easily in my top-10 most elusive Topps variations, I just don’t feel the need to own it despite the fact that it is an unbelievably scarce junk era item. One reason being is that it is a withdrawn card. Another is that it comes from the second series of a product that was already experiencing a drop in collectors/collecting activity after three (3!!) printings of series one (excluding the deluxe/tiffany factory set issues). And it is a drastic change from 1st to 2nd printing: the image, its tone and size of subject are very different from one another, something not seen very often in post-1960s Topps issues.

There are four other very short printed errors changed early in the second series set and three confirmed in the third series set. I will update with info as it comes in.

Quick Look: 1998 Topps Opening Day Nomar Garciaparra Missing Cup Error

25 Apr

A recent eBay find from a set I would never have thought to investigate. Apparently, Nomar’s card was originally issued without the Topps All-Star Rookie cup on front. A very bizarre mistake for the 1997 AL ROY. Despite it falling outside of the junk wax era, I feel that it is worth inclusion here since we don’t usually see many corrections made by Topps this late in the game. Plus, who doesn’t appreciate that iconic Topps symbol!

 

 

Protected: 1990-91 NBA Hoops Errors & Variations Checklist

25 Apr

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1990 Score Rookie & Traded Errors & Variations Checklist

25 Apr

1T Dave Winfield (promo)

1T Dave Winfield (set issue)

2T Kevin Bass (missing F in RF on front)

2T Kevin Bass (correct)

100T Eric Lindros (yellow front – no orange) **UNVERIFIED**

100T Eric Lindros (correct)

109T Terry Shumpert (promo)

109T Terry Shumpert (set issue)

110T Steve Avery (promo)

110T Steve Avery (set issue)

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Quick Look: 1988 Topps Keith Comstock Yellow Name Variation

25 Apr

It appears that the answer to ‘what would have to happen to get me back to this blog, posting new content?’ is: a global pandemic and an excess of (arguably unwanted) “free time.” Anyway, for those getting alerts, welcome back. Very excited to have exhumed this image from the mass grave that is archived message board posts. Since many have asked and so few have seen one, I present one of the last, truly RARE, junk era Topps cards, the 1988 Topps Keith Comstock #778c “Yellow Name” variation:

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