Wednesday, October 29, 2008

1985 Topps Glossy All-Star #8 of 22

You can click on the image to enlarge it, but you can probably already see that there isn't much to the back of this card. It's apparently a commemorative set made for the 1984 All-Star game. Very thoughtful of Topps to do, I suppose.

I don't really remember where these cards were available. They're made by Topps (according to the bottom of the back of the card), but surely they couldn't have been inserts. Were they specials in rack packs? You know, the ones where you kinda sorta got three packs in one? I seem to remember searching through bins in grocery stores trying to find "good" players. Though I wouldn't have done that until the later commemorative sets were released, as I would've only been three years old for this one (remember, back in these times if a card said '84, it meant it was made in '85).

A couple things stand out to me that I find interesting. How come there are only 22 cards made? According to Baseball Reference, there were far more than 22 guys on the roster, including some notable names on the bench. I wonder how they chose the 22. I don't have a complete set of these, so unfortunately, I can't break down the checklist for you. In the game, Straw went 1 for 2 with a stolen base... nice!

And how happy is Strawberry to be a Met? There are five Mets logos on the front of the card! Count 'em: hat, jersey, two on the arm, and the batting glove. It's a nice snapshot of the days before corporate branding became rampant.

Check out the field in the background. The grass looks choppy and overgrown, and there's a giant chain-link fence about 20 yards behind Darryl. Where was this? It almost looks like a high-school field. It's certainly not Shea Stadium, and it's definitely not Candlestick Park, the site of the '85 All-Star game. I guess we'll never know.

I own three of these cards, all of which are pretty badly mis-cut on either the front or back, but they sure are glossy!


Anonymous said...

Those glossy all-star cards were distributed in Topps rack packs from 1986 until they stopped producing them, so I imagine the 1985 set was distributed the same way. (If I bought any in 1985, I really don't remember it - I was a bit young then myself.)

I guess they were among the first "insert cards."

Jeffrey FX said...

You have really deepened my appreciation for this card through your analysis of the photograph. It really is a beautiful card - too bad mine is not cut straight either. I do recall these cards being inserts in the packs. In addition to this 1984 All Star card, I also have 1985 through 1988 - all sharing the same format on front and back. This '84 card is the best of the bunch, although they look really nice all together on a page. I am wondering when they stopped producing these cards because Darryl played in a couple more All Star games than what I have represented. It would be great to fill a 9 sleeve page with these style cards.