December 30, 2019

My players from Decatur (and Central Illinois) baseball card frame

For years I laughed at these baseball card frames, mainly because they are typically pretty expensive ($40 without a discount) and always had such garbage junk wax cards inside demonstrating how the frame worked. I wonder if they left the plastic cases blank if more people would be interested. Or better yet, get reprints of some of the most famous cards ever issued to inspire the collector inside everyone.

Also, you might notice that I have ditched the plastic cases that came with the frame because the cards have a tendency to slip around. As an alternative I have substituted vintage-size toploaders instead and although they move around a little more in the frame, the cards are much easier to switch out which I plan to do often. This isn't a finished piece but will change over time.

A 50 percent Michael's coupon brought this frame into my life this Christmas as a present to myself and I decided to make it a Decatur, Illinois-area focused piece of art.

Top row is Bill Madlock who graduated from Eisenhower High School here in the Soy City. It features his 1974 Topps rookie and some other favorites including a 1977 Topps cloth and his shared 1977 batting leaders card with George Brett.

Row two is St. Teresa graduate Del Unser who has a great rookie card in 1969 Topps and has some fun Canadian issued cards from his days with the Expos from 1976-1978.

Row three is Chuck Dressen who probably had the most memorable career of any athlete from Decatur. Dressen was a member of the Chicago Bears when they were still located in Decatur before the team moved to Chicago and he went on to manage the Brooklyn Dodgers from 1951-1953.

Row four includes Decatur-area players Walter Beck, Hobie Landrith, Roe Skidmore, and Brett Robinson, who didn't make it to the majors but had some great minor league cards while in the Cubs organization. Roe Skidmore is one of 10 players that has a perfect 1.000 career batting average after recording a hit in his one at-bat in a game during the 1970 season. 

October 30, 2019

1974 San Diego Padres/Washington Senators Needs List

Like my 1962 Topps green tint project, I've also always loved the San Diego Padres/Washington Senators errors included in the 1974 Topps set. As a sports writer, I know the temptation to print something you are sure is going to happen as a fact but can't be 100 percent sure about. If you take the chance, it could come back and bite you just as it did to Topps.

Here's the back story:

Original Padres owner C. Arnholt Smith conditionally sold the team to Joseph Danzansky who wanted to move the team to Washington D.C. One of the conditions of the sale was that the new owners had to figure out the stadium situation which meant breaking the 20-year lease the Padres had with San Diego Stadium.

Lawsuits ensued and as Padres fans were up in arms about the sale, McDonald's tycoon Ray Kroc was able to purchase the team our from under Danzansky for $12 million dollars instead (the Marlins were purchased for $1.3 billion dollars in 2018 by comparison). 

In the middle of all this, Topps was producing its 1974 Topps set and went ahead and used "Washington" and "Nat'l Lea." for the team and city for the Padres' players, most famously with Willie McCovey's card.  It made for another memorable set of Topps' error cards that reminds us that nobody's perfect.

1974 San Diego Padres/Washington Senators Needs List

Updated: 10-27-19

32a Johnny Grubb VAR: San Diego
32b Johnny Grubb VAR: Washington

53a Fred Kendall VAR: San Diego
53b Fred Kendall VAR: Washington

77a Rich Troedson VAR: San Diego
77b Rich Troedson VAR: Washington

102a Bill Greif VAR: San Diego
102b Bill Greif VAR: Washington

125a Nate Colbert VAR: San Diego
125b Nate Colbert VAR: Washington

148a Dave Hilton VAR: San Diego
148b Dave Hilton VAR: Washington

173a Randy Jones VAR: San Diego
173b Randy Jones VAR: Washington

197a Vicente Romo VAR: San Diego
197b Vicente Romo VAR: Washington

226a San Diego Padres VAR: San Diego
226b Washington "Nat'l Lea." VAR: Washington

241a Glenn Beckert VAR: San Diego
241b Glenn Beckert VAR: Washington

250a Willie McCovey VAR: San Diego
250b Willie McCovey VAR: Washington

309a Dave Roberts VAR: San Diego
309b Dave Roberts VAR: Washington

364a Clarence Gaston VAR: San Diego
364b Clarence Gaston VAR: Washington

387a Rich Morales VAR: San Diego
387b Rich Morales VAR: Washington

599a Rookie Pitchers - Ron Diorio / Dave Freisleben / Frank Riccelli / Greg Shanahan VAR: Washington
599b Rookie Pitchers - Ron Diorio / Dave Freisleben / Frank Riccelli / Greg Shanahan VAR: Large print
599c Rookie Pitchers - Ron Diorio / Dave Freisleben / Frank Riccelli / Greg Shanahan VAR: Small print

September 29, 2019

Joy of the Completed Insert Set: 2013 Topps Cut to the Chase Inserts

I really enjoyed the glow-in-the-dark inserts in Topps Opening Day from a few years ago but I think my favorite fairly recent insert set has been the 48 Cut to the Chase cards that were included in 2013 Topps Series 1 and 2. Each series got 24 cards of die-cut chromed goodness and they did a great job of including stars without too many misses (sorry Brett Lowrie).

I actually finished the set in March but didn't get them in pages until recently and realized that I had misplaced Paul Molitor's card No. 5. That was the first one of the set that I had and scanned it for my needs list post and since then it has vanished. A quick order later and I have a second Molitor to finally give me the Joy of the Completed Set! 

Here are all 48 cards: 

September 23, 2019

My card sorting buddy or my 2019 Topps Allen and Ginter Collectible Canines Minis Needs List

I always love the Allen and Ginter dog mini cards even though over the years the cards have gotten a little repetitive. This year I added my own Collectible Canine, my dog Scarlett who we got from a shelter in Georgia when my wife and I lived there. She's a little neurotic especially when the mail lady delivers the mail or she sees a squirrel in the back yard.

But I can always count on her to help me sort some cards, especially when I put the cards where she wants to sleep.

2019 Topps Allen and Ginter Collectible Canines Minis Needs List

Last updated: 8-18-19

CC-1 Beagle
CC-2 Boxer
CC-3 Vizsla
CC-4 German Shepherd
CC-5 Siberian Husky
CC-6 Golden Retriever
CC-7 Great Dane
CC-8 Borzoi
CC-9 Dachshund
CC-10 Black Labrador
CC-11 English Bulldog
CC-12 English Springer Spaniel
CC-13 Rhodesian Ridgeback
CC-14 Papillon
CC-15 Yellow Labrador
CC-16 Chihuahua
CC-17 French Bulldog
CC-18 Bernese Mountain Dog
CC-19 Corgi
CC-20 Bullmastiff
CC-21 Weimaraner
CC-22 Shih Tzu
CC-23 West Highland Terrier
CC-24 Boston Terrier
CC-25 Maltese

2018 Topps Allen and Ginter Baseball Equipment of the Ages Needs List

2018 Topps Allen and Ginter Baseball Equipment of the Ages Needs List

Updated: 9-23-19

BEA-1 Vintage Glove
BEA-2 "The Catch" Glove
BEA-3 Modern Glove
BEA-4 Vintage Bat
BEA-5 Modern Bat
BEA-6 Early Catcher's Mask
BEA-7 Modern Catcher's Mask
BEA-8 Batting Gloves
BEA-9 Vintage Catcher's Mitt
BEA-10 Modern Catcher's Mitt
BEA-11 Vintage Baseball
BEA-12 Modern Baseball
BEA-13 Catcher's Chest Protector
BEA-14 Flip-Up Sunglasses
BEA-15 Vintage Cleats
BEA-16 Modern Cleats
BEA-17 Baseball Donut
BEA-18 Fungo Bat
BEA-19 Pitch Counter
BEA-20 Rosin Bag
BEA-21 Batting Shin Guards
BEA-22 Catching Shin Guards
BEA-23 Modern Baseball Sunglasses
BEA-24 Baseball Hat
BEA-25 Batting Helmet
BEA-26 Radar Gun
BEA-27 Bases
BEA-28 Eye Black
BEA-29 Baseball Sweater
BEA-30 Vintage Uniform

September 22, 2019

My dream jacket or my 1977 Topps Cloth Stickers needs list

One question I have always had about the 1977 Topps Cloth Sticker set was that did anyone ever take a nice sports jacket and stick a whole bunch of stickers on it and create a memorable Topps artifact? 

Topps used to make promotional videos for their new releases with a party atmosphere (they were called Rip Parties) at a card shop in Florida. They are the first videos on the Topps Digital YouTube page and were hosted by The Rip Master (who is also the owner of the card shop that hosted the videos). 

The Rip Master's blue jacket had packs attached to it and so it is probably as close as I can get to my dream of a cloth sticker ensemble. 

The 1977 Topps Cloth stickers set is made up of 55 cards that are mostly similar to their 1977 Topps main set counterparts. Although take look at good old Yaz's card in each set and you'll notice some photo cropping differences and an adjusted signature. 
The backs are also very different including instructions on how to use the stickers at the bottom of the cloth cards.

The checklist includes 55 player cards and two nine-card puzzle collections that feature the 1976 National and American League All-Star teams.  

1977 Topps Cloth Stickers Needs List

Last updated: 10-27-19

1. Alan Ashby, Toronto Blue Jays
2. Buddy Bell, Cleveland Indians SP

3. Johnny Bench, Cincinnati Reds
4. Vida Blue, Oakland Athletics
5. Bert Blyleven, Texas Rangers
6. Steve Braun, Seattle Mariners SP
7. George Brett, Kansas City Royals
8. Lou Brock, St. Louis Cardinals
9. Jose Cardenal, Chicago Cubs
10. Rod Carew, Minnesota Twins SP
11. Steve Carlton, Philadelphia Phillies
12. Dave Cash, Montreal Expos
13. Cesar Cedeno, Houston Astros SP
14. Ron Cey, Los Angeles Dodgers
15. Mark Fidrych, Detroit Tigers
16. Dan Ford, Minnesota Twins
17. Wayne Garland, Cleveland Indians
18. Ralph Garr, Chicago White Sox
19. Steve Garvey, Los Angeles Dodgers
20. Mike Hargrove, Texas Rangers
21. Jim Hunter, New York Yankees
22. Reggie Jackson, New York Yankees
23. Randy Jones, San Diego Padres
24. Dave Kingman, New York Mets SP
25. Bill Madlock, Chicago Cubs
26. Lee May, Baltimore Orioles SP
27. John Mayberry, Kansas City Royals
28. John Messersmith, Atlanta Braves
29. Willie Montanez, Atlanta Braves
30. John Montefusco, San Francisco Giants SP
31. Joe Morgan, Cincinnati Reds
32. Thurman Munson, New York Yankees
33. Bobby Murcer, San Francisco Giants
34. Al Oliver, Pittsburgh Pirates SP
35. Dave Pagan, Seattle Mariners
36. Jim Palmer, Baltimore Orioles SP
37. Tony Perez, Cincinnati Reds
38. Pete Rose, Cincinnati Reds SP
39. Joe Rudi, California Angels
40. Nolan Ryan, California Angels SP
41. Mike Schmidt, Philadelphia Phillies
42. Tom Seaver, New York Mets
43. Ted Simmons, St. Louis Cardinals
44. Bill Singer, Toronto Blue Jays
45. Willie Stargell, Pittsburgh Pirates
46. Rusty Staub, Detroit Tigers
47. Don Sutton, Los Angeles Dodgers
48. Luis Tiant, Boston Red Sox
49. Bill Travers, Milwaukee Brewers
50. Claudell Washington, Oakland Athletics
51. Bob Watson, Houston Astros
52. Dave Winfield, San Diego Padres
53. Carl Yastrzemski, Boston Red Sox
54. Robin Yount, Milwaukee Brewers
55. Richie Zisk, Chicago White Sox

AL Puzzle Upper-Left
AL Puzzle Upper-Center
AL Puzzle Upper-Right
AL Puzzle Middle-Left
AL Puzzle Middle-Center
AL Puzzle Middle-Right
AL Puzzle Bottom-Left
AL Puzzle Bottom-Center
AL Puzzle Bottom-Right

NL Puzzle Upper-Left
NL Puzzle Upper-Center
NL Puzzle Upper-Right
NL Puzzle Middle-Left
NL Puzzle Middle-Center
NL Puzzle Middle-Right
NL Puzzle Bottom-Left
NL Puzzle Bottom-Center
NL Puzzle Bottom-Right

August 6, 2019

2018 Topps Stranger Things Season One Needs List


I'm down to just a couple of inserts to complete Season 1 and I have a bunch of double inserts and base cards if anyone is interested in a trade.


The Topps Stranger Things set for Season 1 really filled the void for me this year waiting for the 2019 products to finally arrive. At first I was a little concerned about never even seeing the product in the wild because if you are able to land an autograph from the set you can receive a huge return on investment but I've been lucky in finding some blasters at Walmart.

I'm mainly looking for the inserts stickers, character and scene cards. I'm also going for the patch replica cards that came one-per-blaster.

2018 Topps Stranger Things Season 1 Checklist

Last Updated: 8-6-19

Base set


Character stickers


Character cards

2, 4, 5, 6, 12, 13. 16, 18, 19. 20

Scene stickers

3, 8

Commemorative Patch Set Checklist

Barbara Holland - Hawkins High School
Benny Hammond - Benny's Burgers
Connie Frazier - Benny's Burgers
Connie Frazier - Hawkins National Laboratory
Dustin Henderson - Hawkins Middle School
Eleven - Benny's Burgers
Eleven - Hawkins National Laboratory
Florence - Hawkins Police Station
Jim Hopper - Benny's Burgers
Jim Hopper - Hawkins Police Station
Jonathan Byers - Hawkins High School
Lucas Sinclair - Hawkins Middle School
Martin Brenner - Hawkins National Laboratory
Mike Wheeler - Hawkins Middle School
Nancy Wheeler - Hawkins High School
Officer Callahan - Hawkins Police Station
Officer Powell - Benny's Burgers
Officer Powell - Hawkins Police Station
Scott Clarke - Hawkins Middle School
Shepard - Hawkins National Laboratory
Steve Harrington - Hawkins High School
Terry Ives - Hawkins National Laboratory
Tommy H. - Hawkins High School
Will Byers - Hawkins Middle School

July 28, 2019

Don Mossi Needs List

This checklist should have happened years ago but with Mossi's passing last week it was the right time to finally get things together and formally get a Mossi collection together. 

Don Mossi Needs List

Updated: 12-29-19

1955 Bowman #259 RC
1955 Indians Golden Stamps #8 
1955 Topps #85 RC
1955 Topps Double Header #83 Joe Frazier and/84 Don Mossi
1956 Topps #39 
1956 Topps #39A GB
1956 Topps Pins #9 
1957 Topps #8 
1958 Topps #35A 
1958 Topps #35B YT
1959 Topps #302
1960 Tigers Jay Publishing #10 
1960 Topps #418 
1960 Topps #418A WB
1960 Topps Tattoos #38 
1961 Post #42A COM
1961 Post #42B BOX
1961 Seven-Eleven #2 
1961 Topps #14 
1962 Jello #23 
1962 Post #23 
1962 Post Canadian #23 
1962 Tigers Jay Publishing #10 
1962 Tigers Post Cards Ford #12 
1962 Topps #55 AL ERA Leaders/Dick Donovan/Bill Stafford/Don Mossi/Milt Pappas
1962 Topps #105
1962 Topps Stamps #49 
1962 Topps Venezuelan #55 AL ERA Leaders/Dick Donovan/Bill Stafford/Don Mossi
1962 Topps Venezuelan #105
1963 Jello #56 
1963 Post #56 
1963 Topps #218 Tiger Twirlers/Frank Lary/Don Mossi/Jim Bunning
1963 Topps #530 
1964 Topps #335
1964 Topps Venezuelan #335 
1966 O-Pee-Chee #74 
1966 Topps #74 
1966 Topps Advertising Panels #1 Sandy Koufax/Jim Fregosi/Don Mossi
1966 Topps Venezuelan #74 
1975 Indians 1954 TCMA #22 
1975 Indians 1954 TCMA #39 Wynn/Lem/Hoop/Hout/Sant/Narl/Garc/Newh/Lopez
1979 Diamond Greats #297 
1979 TCMA 50'S #215 
1981 TCMA 60's II #418 
1981 Tigers Detroit News #49 
1984-89 O'Connell and Son Ink #152 
1990 Pacific Legends #95 

2015 Topps 50th Anniversary Stamped -- 1966 Topps

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: 12-29-19

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 Montreal Expos Team Issue Post Card 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

1985 Tastycake #25 Del Unser (Phillies coach)

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: 12-29-19

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 Panini Stickers #30 Dan Hampton
1989 Pro Set #41 Dan Hampton
1989 Score #7 Dan Hampton
1989 Topps #66 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 Collect A Books Dan Hampton
1990 Pro Set 
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 Hampton1993 Action Packed All-Madden #12 Dan Hampton

Modern Sets:
2011 Press Pass Legends No. 62 Dan Hampton
2014 Panini Prizm No. 105 Dan Hampton
2016 Panini Classics No. 180 Dan Hampton
2017 Panini Playoff Football No. 114 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

April 14, 2019

UPDATED: 2018 Topps Heritage & High Numbers Decals Insert Set Needs List

UPDATE: Just after I posted this I was reminded that there were also deckle edge cards in the 2018 Heritage Minor League set which I have added at the bottom.


The 2018 Topps Heritage set paid tribute to the famous 1969 Topps Deckle Edge set that arrived for one season and then would appear again in 1974. Regular sized insert cards can be found in the regular set as well as the Heritage High Number set this gives Deckle-Heads 60 total cards to track down.

I'm currently two cards short of the 1969 set (the two variations) and someday I imagine I will get around to 1974 as well.

Last updated: 8-11-19

2018 Topps Heritage Decals Insert Set

1. Mike Trout - Los Angeles Angels
2. Jose Altuve - Houston Astros
3. Carlos Correa - Houston Astros
4. Aaron Judge - New York Yankees
5. Francisco Lindor - Cleveland Indians
6. Clayton Kershaw - Los Angeles Dodgers
7. Bryce Harper - Washington Nationals
8. Buster Posey - San Francisco Giants
9. Cody Bellinger - Los Angeles Dodgers
10. Joey Votto - Cincinnati Reds
11. Ozzie Albies - Atlanta Braves
12. Yadier Molina - St. Louis Cardinals
13. Salvador Perez - Kansas City Royals
14. Mookie Betts - Boston Red Sox
15. Gary Sanchez - New York Yankees
16. Giancarlo Stanton - New York Yankees
17. Andrew Benintendi - Boston Red Sox
18. Kris Bryant - Chicago Cubs
19. Anthony Rizzo - Chicago Cubs
20. Manny Machado - Baltimore Orioles
21. Rafael Devers - Boston Red Sox
22. Clint Frazier - New York Yankees
23. Rhys Hoskins - Philadelphia Phillies
24. Amed Rosario - New York Mets
25. Victor Robles - Washington Nationals
26. Chris Sale - Boston Red Sox
27. Nolan Arenado - Colorado Rockies
28. Max Scherzer - Washington Nationals
29. Paul Goldschmidt - Arizona Diamondbacks
30. Corey Seager - Los Angeles Dodgers

2018 Topps Heritage High Numbers Decals Insert Set

1. Shohei Ohtani - Los Angeles Angels
2. Ichiro - Seattle Mariners
3. Andrew McCutchen - San Francisco Giants
4. Charlie Blackmon - Colorado Rockies
5. Albert Pujols - Los Angeles Angels
6. Justin Verlander - Houston Astros
7. Josh Donaldson - Toronto Blue Jays
8. Freddie Freeman - Atlanta Braves
9. Corey Kluber - Cleveland Indians
10. Noah Syndergaard - New York Mets
11. Joe Mauer - Minnesota Twins
12. Miguel Cabrera - Detroit Tigers
13. Eric Hosmer - San Diego Padres
14. Mike Moustakas - Kansas City Royals
15. Javier Baez - Chicago Cubs
16. Stephen Piscotty - Oakland Athletics
17. Scott Kingery - Philadelphia Phillies
18. Jordan Hicks - St. Louis Cardinals
19. Alex Bregman - Houston Astros
20. Christian Yelich - Milwaukee Brewers
21. Adrian Beltre - Texas Rangers
22. Matt Chapman - Oakland Athletics
23. Didi Gregorius - New York Yankees
24. Jose Abreu - Chicago White Sox
25. Starling Marte - Pittsburgh Pirates
26. Trey Mancini - Baltimore Orioles
27. Gleyber Torres - New York Yankees
28. Dansby Swanson - Atlanta Braves
29. Patrick Corbin - Arizona Diamondbacks
30. Christian Villanueva - San Diego Padres

2018 Topps Heritage Minor League 1969 Deckle Edge Needs List

The standard version features black and white cards and the short-print variations have color photos.

1. Tim Tebow - Binghamton Rumble Ponies
2. Colton Welker - Lancaster JetHawks
3. Matt Manning - West Michigan Whitecaps
4. MacKenzie Gore - Fort Wayne TinCaps
5. Ryan Vilade - Asheville Tourists
6. Leody Taveras - Down East Wood Ducks
7. Justin Dunn - St. Lucie Mets
8. Mitch Keller - Altoona Curve
9. Corbin Burnes - Colorado Springs Sky Sox
10. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. - New Hampshire Fisher Cats
11. Eloy Jimenez - Birmingham Barons
12. Genesis Cabrera - Montgomery Biscuits
13. Jose Albertos - South Bend Cubs
14. Estevan Florial - Tampa Tarpons
15. Heliot Ramos - Augusta GreenJackets
16. Jorge Mateo - Nashville Sounds
17. Josh Naylor - San Antonio Missions
18. Seuly Matias - Lexington Legends
19. Adbert Alzolay - Iowa Cubs
20. Fernando Tatis Jr. - San Antonio Missions
21. Bo Bichette - New Hampshire Fisher Cats
22. Kolby Allard - Gwinnett Stripers
23. Daulton Varsho - Visalia Rawhide
24. Brendan Rodgers - Hartford Yard Goats
25. Hunter Greene - Dayton Dragons
26. Brandon Marsh - Burlington Bees
27. Jesus Luzardo - Midland RockHounds
28. Trevor Stephan - Tampa Tarpons
29. Mickey Moniak - Clearwater Threshers
30. Royce Lewis - Cedar Rapids Kernels

January 28, 2019

Topps Was Way Ahead on the 10-Year Challenge

Flipping through some Twins today and I was reminded that Topps was ahead of the game on the 10-Year Challenge. 

But then Topps has been in the flashback game since 1972 Topps with its "Boyhood Photos of the Stars"subset that included Tom Seaver, Joe Torre, Sal Bando and Willie Stargell. The cards were first included in Series 3 and then again in Series 4 but weren't found in Series 5 and 6.

These cards were never my particular favorites but they might have been had they evened out the photo sizes like they did in the Mauer card.