June 10, 2019

Mystery Science Theater 3000 Garbage Pail Kids Variations Needs List

In last fall's Garbage Pail Kids set "Oh, The Horror-ible!" they included two cards honoring my favorite TV show, Mystery Science Theater 3000. Cards 4a and 4b in the Modern Sci-Fi Sticker subset includes "MST3 Kay" (4a) and Jaded Joel (4b) which shows Crow T. Robot, Tom Servo and Joel (more on that in a moment) riffing on The Garbage Pail Kids Movie, one of the worst movies ever, and losing their lunch all over the cinema.

While the card 4b references Joel Robinson, the first victim of the Mad Scientists during the first four and a half seasons of the show, it looks like it is Jonah Ray Rodrigues' Jonah Heston, who stars in Season 10 and 11, that is doing the puking on the cards.

Along with the regular base card, the cards come in seven variations plus a 1-of-1 printing plate. The key difference is the color of the border and each variation is named after either a bodily secretion or something equally as gross like "bruised."

MST3K Needs List

Last updated: 6-10-19

MST3 Kay 4a version
Spit /#99
Bloody Nose /#75
Fool's Gold /#50
Printing Plate

Jaded Joel 4b version
Spit /#99
Bloody Nose /#75
Fool's Gold /#50
Printing Plate

June 8, 2019

Del Unser Needs List

Another Central Illinois player to collect! Del Unser is from Decatur and he played 15 seasons in the majors with five teams. His baseball card appearances are very memorable as he has a Topps All-Star Rookie Cup card in the 1969 Topps set. What a way to have your first baseball card.

Unser also has a 1970 Ovenca Venezuelan League card which will pose a challenge for the completist in me. His 1975 Topps Mini card from his days with the Phillies will probably become my favorite card of his.

Between the release of the 1977 Topps set the the 1977 O-Pee-Chee set, Unser got another card and grew a mustache (he's got one in the O-Pee-Chee version but is clean shaven on his Topps card.)

Later in his career, Unser became an expert pinch-hitter and in 1979 he his three consecutive pinch-hit home runs. It was a major league record and Topps gave him a 1979 Highlights card No. 6 in the 1980 Topps set.

This is going to be a fun player collection to build.

Del Unser Needs List

Last updated: 7-14-19

1969 Milton Bradley #280 Del Unser
1969 Senators Team Issue 8x10 #18 Del Unser
1969 Topps #338 Del Unser RC
1969 Topps Team Posters #23 Washington Senators
1970 MLB PhotoStamps #287 Del Unser
1970 O-Pee-Chee #336 Del Unser
1970 Topps #336 Del Unser
1970 Venezuelan Ovenca #238 Del Unser
1971 Dell Today's Team Stamps #575 Del Unser
1971 O-Pee-Chee #33 Del Unser
1971 Senators Team Issue W-UNC #24 Del Unser
1971 Topps #33 Del Unser
1972 Milton Bradley #350 Del Unser
1972 Topps #687 Del Unser
1973 O-Pee-Chee #247 Del Unser
1973 Phillies Team Issue #23 Del Unser
1973 Topps #247 Del Unser
1974 O-Pee-Chee #69 Del Unser
1974 Topps #69 Del Unser
1974 Topps Stamps #80 Del Unser
1975 Mets SSPC #4 Del Unser
1975 O-Pee-Chee #138 Del Unser
1975 Topps #138 Del Unser
1975 Topps Mini #138 Del Unser
1976 O-Pee-Chee #268 Del Unser
1976 SSPC #535 Del Unser
1976 Topps #268 Del Unser
1977 Burger Chef Discs #155 Del Unser
1977 O-Pee-Chee #27 Del Unser
1977 Topps #471 Del Unser
1978 O-Pee-Chee #216 Del Unser
1978 Topps #348 Del Unser
1979 O-Pee-Chee #330 Del Unser
1979 Topps #628 Del Unser
1980 O-Pee-Chee #12 Del Unser
1980 Phillies Burger King #13 Del Unser
1980 Topps #6 Del Unser HL
1980 Topps #27 Del Unser
1981 Donruss #164A Del Unser P1/No 3B heading
1981 Donruss #164B Del Unser P2/Batting record on back/corrected
1981 Fleer #26 Del Unser
1981 O-Pee-Chee #56 Del Unser
1981 Topps #566 Del Unser
1982 Donruss #273 Del Unser
1982 Fleer #261 Del Unser
1982 Topps #713 Del Unser

May 27, 2019

It's come to this: My Dan Hampton Needs List

I never thought I would see the day that I would create a needs list for a Chicago Bears player but here we are. As a life long Packers fan who grew up in western Wisconsin, the rivalry I always cared about was Packers/Vikings much more than Packers/Bears. Although I certainly hated Kevin Butler and Neal Anderson as a kid.

But as a sports writer in Decatur, Illinois which was the original home of Bears, it's impossible for me to escape the team that started as the Decatur Staleys in 1920 before becoming the Chicago Staleys in 1921 and then the Chicago Bears in 1922.

A couple of weeks ago, I interviewed Dan Hampton about an upcoming speaking engagement he had in Decatur and so what better inspiration to build a collection?

This is by no means a complete list and is mainly Hampton's cards from his playing days. I'm always looking for Hampton rookies, of course, and autographs.

Dan Hampton Needs List

Last updated: 5-27-19

1981 Bears Police #9 Dan Hampton
1981 Topps #316 Dan Hampton RC
1981 Topps Stickers #195 Dan Hampton
1981 Topps Team Checklists #264 Bears TL/Payton/Hampton
1982 Topps #297 Dan Hampton
1982 Topps Team Checklists #292 Bears TL/Walter Payton
1983 Topps #30 Dan Hampton PB
1985 McDonald's Bears Blue Tab #99 Dan Hampton
1985 McDonald's Bears Orange Tab #99 Dan Hampton
1985 McDonald's Bears Yellow Tab #99 Dan Hampton
1985 Topps #30 Dan Hampton AP
1986 Fleer Team Action #8 Chicago Bears
1986 McDonald's Bears Black Tab #99 Dan Hampton
1986 McDonald's Bears Blue Tab #99 Dan Hampton
1986 McDonald's Bears Gold Tab #99 Dan Hampton
1986 McDonald's Bears Green Tab #99 Dan Hampton
1986 Topps #22 Dan Hampton
1987 Fleer Team Action #6 Chicago Bears
1987 Topps #53 Dan Hampton
1988 Topps #83 Dan Hampton
1989 Action Packed Test #6 Dan Hampton UER
1989 Pro Set #41 Dan Hampton
1989 Score #7 Dan Hampton
1990 Action Packed #25 Dan Hampton
1990 Action Packed All-Madden #52 Dan Hampton
1990 Fleer Update #U112 Dan Hampton
1990 Kenner Starting Lineup Cards #18 Dan Hampton 90E
1990 Pro Set #449 Dan Hampton
1990 Score #201 Dan Hampton
1990 Topps #377 Dan Hampton
1990 Topps Tiffany #377 Dan Hampton
1991 Pro Set #696 Dan Hampton LEG
1991 Score #89 Dan Hampton
1993 Action Packed All-Madden #12 Dan Hampton

May 7, 2019

Another Decatur, IL collection: Walter "Boom-Boom" Beck

As a sports reporter in Decatur, IL, I get excited when there's a local connection to a professional player, be it baseball, football, basketball or any sport. But my heart is always with baseball and so I have started building collections for local players, most notably Eisenhower High School graduate Bill Madlock.  

Another Decatur native I'm starting to collect is Walter Beck. He pitched spuradically from 1929 to 1945 for the St. Louis Browns, Brooklyn Dodgers, Philadelphia Phillies, Detroit Tigers, Cincinnati Reds, and Pittsburgh Pirates. He also made a few memorable baseball card appearances including the 1940 Play Ball set, the 1934 Diamond Baseball Matchcover set and 1934 Goudey. 

I tracked down a graded copy of his 1934 Goudey appearance which features a little cameo by Lou Gehrig at the bottom.

The back has a write up of Beck's career and his pitching strengths which is attributed to Gehrig. I always find it funny thinking about the "Iron Horse" actually writing these and maybe putting them off until a deadline was approaching and then pulling an all-nighter to get them submitted.

 The last line reminds us that "He was born in Decatur, Ill., 1906."

April 17, 2019

Joy of the Completed Set: Getting those last two '69 Deckle Edge cards

Kids tearing open packs of 1969 Topps found odd deckle edge cards inserted. The odd border, the black and white photos, the unusual colored facsimile autographs. It's easy to see why the set didn't continue on (until another aborted set in 1974) but it is these sort of sets that attract my attention as a collector. 

Those collectors opening the many series of the '69 set found an oddity in the checklist too as Joe Foy and Rusty Staub shared card No. 22 and Jim Wynn and Hoyt Wilhelm shared card No. 11, making 35 cards in the set instead of the stated 33 found on the back of the cards.    

The Foy and Wynn cards proved to be much more rare than the Staub and Wilhelm cards and so of course those there also the final hurdle in my work towards finishing the set. But an eBay seller recently posted both cards in a combined auction for a price that I typically find for a single card and I moved quickly.

So with these two cards in hand, I can sit back and enjoy the joyous feeling of another completed set. Thanks to my Dad too, who gifted me the Rose, Mays and Clemente for Christmas a few months ago.

1955 Topps Doubleheaders Needs List

The 1955 Topps Doubleheaders set is an easy one to overlook. As one of Topps first non-flagship experiments it is largely overshadowed by the main set. The set population is very small and frankly there aren't a lot of examples to collect. It just isn't a set you often stumble upon at a card show or garage sale.

The very nature of the cards -- collectors get two card in one by folding over the top part of the card -- which if you did that five or 10 times, your card is basically destroyed. Pristine examples of the most valuable cards in the set (including Ted Williams, Jackie Robinson and Hank Aaron) are worth many thousands and so I have no delusions about tracking down those cards. But I enjoy the tall illustrated cards and so this list is just to keep a record of what I've been able to find so far.

Last updated: 4-17-19

1-2 Al Rosen, Chuck Diering
3-4 Monte Irvin, Russ Kemmerer
5-6 Ted Kazanski, Gordon Jones
7-8 Bill Taylor, Billy O'Dell
9-10 JW Porter, Thornton Kipper
11-12 Curt Roberts, Arnie Portocarrero
13-14 Wally Westlake, Frank House
15-16 Rube Walker, Lou Limmer
17-18 Dean Stone, Charlie White
19-20 Karl Spooner, Jim Hughes
21-22 Bill Skowron, Frank Sullivan
23-24 Jack Shepard, Stan Hack
25-26 Jackie Robinson Don Hoak
27-28 Dusty Rhodes, Jim Davis
29-30 Vic Power, Ed Bailey
31-32 Howie Pollet,  Ernie Banks
33-34 Jim Pendleton, Gene Conley
35-36 Karl Olson, Andy Carey
37-38 Wally Moon, Joe Cunningham
39-40 Fred Marsh, Jake Thies
41-42 Ed Lopat, Harvey Haddix
43-44 Leo Kiely, Chuck Stobbs
45-46 Al Kaline, Corky Valentine
47-48 Spook Jacobs, Johnny Gray
49-50 Ron Jackson, Jim Finigan
51-52 Ray Jablonski, Bob Keegan
53-54 Billy Herman, Sandy Amoros
55-56 Chuck Harmon, Bob Skinner
57-58 Bill Hall, Bob Grim
59-60 Bill Glynn, Bob Miller
61-62 Billy Gardner, Johnny Hetki
63-64 Bob Borkowski,  Bob Turley
65-66 Joe Collins, Jack Harshman
67-68 Jim Hegan, Jack Parks
69-70 Ted Williams, Hal Smith
71-72 Gair Allie, Joe Hatten
73-74 Jerry Lynch, Harry Brecheen
75-76 Tom Wright,  Bunky Stewart
77-78 Dave Hoskins, Ed McGhee
79-80 Roy Sievers, Art Fowler
81-82 Danny Schell, Gus Triandos
83-84 Joe Frazier, Don Mossi
85-86 Elmer Valo, Hal Brown
87-88 Bob Kennedy, Windy McCall
89-90 Ruben Gomez, Jim Rivera
91-92 Lou Ortiz, Milt Bolling
93-94 Carl Sawatski, El Tappe
95-96 Dave Jolly, Bobby Hofman
97-98 Preston Ward, Don Zimmer
99-100 Bill Renna, Dick Groat
101-102 Bill Wilson, Bill Tremel
103-104 Hank Sauer, Camilo Pascual
105-106 Hank Aaron, Ray Herbert
107-108 Alex Grammas, Tom Qualters
109-110 Hal Newhouser, Charlie Bishop
111-112 Harmon Killebrew, Johnny Podres
113-114 Ray Boone, Bob Purkey
115-116 Dale Long, Ferris Fain
117-118 Steve Bilko, Bob Milliken
119-120 Mel Parnell, Tom Hurd
121-122 Ted Kluszewski,  Jim Owens
123-124 Gus Zernial, Bob Trice
125-126 Rip Repulski, Ted Lepcio
127-128 Warren Spahn, Tom Brewer
129-130 Jim Gilliam, Ellis Kinder
131-132 Herm Wehmeier, Wayne Terwilliger