Saturday, May 9, 2009

Pack Three

Pack 3 +15
399 Ron Hassey
420 Leon Durham
157 Glenn Braggs
532 Paul Assenmacher
372 Mike Campbell
85 Mike Krukow
66 Matt Nokes
585 Tony Gwynn
570 Cal Ripken, Jr.
522 Mike Marshall
279 Dennis Eckersley
201 Floyd Youmans
259 Mark Gubicza
644 Major League Prospects (Greg Myers, Greg Tabor)
464 Ed Correa

You can't ask for a much better pack than this. It was going along, just so-so. Nothing special until I came across Matt Nokes. His career didn't live up to the expectations, but in 1988 he was a young star.

But after Nokes is where it got good. I flipped Nokes over, and there was Tony Gwynn looking at me. A Hall of Famer and one of my favorite players ever, second only to Cal Ripken, Jr.

I really like how Fleer used the team colors in the banner at the bottom. It kinda ties everything together and somehow manages to not clash with the red and blue stripes. It would be nice if those stripes matched the team colors too, though.

I also noticed when I was putting these scans together, that today is Tony's 49th birthday, how fitting that I pulled his card today. Happy Birthday Tony Gywnn!

As I was thinking how much I like Tony Gwynn and that I hope I pull Ripken out of the box somewhere, who do I see next?

So in one pack I pulled the entire HoF class of 2007. But it wasn't over yet. A few cards later and there's Dennis Eckersley. Three Hall of Famers in one pack is pretty nice. I'm going to say this is an early season contender for best pack of the box.

I also pulled the rookie card of Greg Myers and Greg Tabor. Myers stuck around as a part time player until the conclusion of the 2005 season and finished with a .255 average with 87 homeers and 396 RBIs in 1108 games.

The stats you see for Tabor are it for his Major League career. Nine games, nine at bats, one hit, one RBI and four runs scored. His one hit, a double, came on September 29, 1987 against Twins pitcher Dan Schatzeder. He moved to third on a wild pitch and then scored on a Bob Brower single. Tabor was pinch hit for his next at bat.

His other three runs scored came as a pinch runner on September 10, 27 and October 1, 1987.

He was traded to the Cubs in March 1988, but never played for the big club and retired after that one season with Triple-A Iowa.

Today's sticker was the St. Louis Cardinals.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Pack Two

Pack 2 +14
(bold blue text indicates upgraded card)
191 Reid Nichols
611 Tommy Hinzo
460 Wade Rowdon
400 Donnie Hill
527 Franklin Stubbs
626 All Star Righties (Bret Saberhagen, Mike Witt, Jack Morris)
546 David Palmer
572 Larry Sheets
449 Billy Hatcher
386 Rey Quinones
641 Rookie Prospects (Mark Grace, Darrin Jackson)
67 Dan Petry
502 Johnny Ray
478 Jeff Russell
99 Jose Uribe

Despite having never bought a pack of this stuff when it was new, I had managed to accumulate twenty cards somewhere (most likely through repack boxes I bought in the early 90s).

In my other box breaks, most notably '88 Score, I didn't make note of upgraded cards. I'm not going to count them as doubles, as such, but I do want to keep a running count of what cards get replaced. Hence marking upgrades.

So we'll see if I can replace all twenty of the cards I have or not. They're not in terrible shape, aside from a dinged corner here and there, so if I had a choice, I'd vote not to replace them. But I don't have a whole lot of say in the matter, do I?

While we're on the topic of that upgraded card, if Billy Hatcher loses his job today, I am truly sorry.

And now it's time to look at some cards.

This card reminds me a lot of the Super Shortstops from 1988 Score. In fact, they were taken in nearly identical locations. The Fleer card was shot a bit to the left of the Score card, and probably right around the same time, as you can see batting cages on the field in both shots.

I wonder if more than one photograph was being taken at the same time. Jack Morris is clearly not looking at the same cameraman.

The front of the card looks miscut, but I don't think it is. Even in the horizontal orientation, the photograph is set in the same place it would be on a vertical card. But by looking at the back, the card is actually miscut just a bit, but it doesn't affect the placement of the photograph. It looks like they used the same template for all the cards and didn't try to center the horizontal photographs. It doesn't show well in the scan because of the white behind the card, but in hand you really notice how off center the photographs are.

Major League Prospects. I had to do some checking, but it looks like this is the true rookie card for both Mark Grace and Darrin Jackson. Grace made his debut in May 1988, but Jackson had played a few games at the Major League level in both 1985 and 1987 (16 at bats, five hits), but looking around I didn't find any earlier cards. I guess I'm finally getting used to the idea that today "rookie card" means a photograph taken seconds after birth of a potential future baseball player.

Both of these guys had respectable careers, with Grace being one of the more consistent hitters of the 1990s. His 1,754 hits between 1990 and 1999 are the most by any player during that decade, he also hit the most doubles and sac flies of the 90s.

For some reason I always think Grace had been around before 1988. Maybe because for some reason I get he and Ryne Sandberg mixed up. I don't know, but I always have to stop and think when I see a Mark Grace rookie card from 1988.

The sticker for today is a good one:

That is the best logo in the history of baseball. Period. The Expos of the '80s had the best uniform and cap ever, but the Brewers had the best logo.

Sorry Bob reports that the Diamondbacks have fired Bob Melvin and will replace him with A.J. Hinch before tomorrow night's game.

So? Look who was in pack one:

Coincidence? Maybe. Or maybe I've uncovered the mythical 1988 Fleer From Beyond that's able to tell the future through baseball cards.

Let this be a warning to all current managers and coaches who are featured in 1988 Fleer. If I pull your card, I take no responsibility for what foul events transpire in your career.

Thursday, May 7, 2009


The Fleer Sticker Project has a great post on the stickers from 1988 Fleer. Interestingly enough it was posted just a few days ago.

Great pictures and great information.

Pack One

Pack 1 +15

Pack one can be seen over at A Pack to be Named Later.

By the end of the afternoon, I'll have completed the process of turning 1989 Bowman into 1988 Fleer. So stay around for that, and come back tomorrow for pack two.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

How 'bout this one?

I'm liking this one. It has the spiffy Fleer crown that has gotten positive nods and a more accurate font/text placement.

A cleaned up version of this (or maybe just this version of it) will probably end up as the final product. Unless there's screaming from the masses against it.

And as I mentioned on 1988 Score, I signed on to write a few pack breaks here and there for A Pack to be Named Later, so pack number one when the box arrives will be posted over there.

Hopefully in the next several days we'll see some cards.