Thursday, June 4, 2009

1988 Topps #710

I think we'll all be thankful that Strawberry's hideous '87 Donruss Diamond Kings painting won't be the first thing visible at this site any more!

Next up, 1988 Topps #710:

Topps hit a grand slam with the aesthetics on the front of this card. I'm not a Mets fan, but even I can acknowledge that this is a perfect blend of blue and orange. It just seems so... evenly distributed.

You've got the orange "METS" at the top, the light blue border, the darker blue background behind Strawberry's name, and a whole mish-mash of blue and orange on Darryl's uniform. He's even wearing what appear to be "real" stirrups - as opposed to the fake stripe version. No wonder Strawberry was such an unstoppable force on the diamond: If you look good, you play good.

This was the first year I remember really liking the back of a card, or at least noticing it:

The orange just continues with the overall color scheme of the card. Even though all of the card backs in '88 were orange, it's especially appropriate on Darryl's card. We've got the game winning RBI stat (he had five in 1987, 47 in his career to that point), a blurb about his Texas League dominance (34 HR, 100 walks and a .602 slugging percantage in '82), and a shout out to the scout who signed him, Roger Jongewaard. Nice find, Roger!

The light, white baseballs across the top behind the player's name are a nice, albeit subtle, touch.

The only thing odd is the absurdly high card number assigned to a superstar of Strawberry's caliber, #710. Topps is notorious for assigning round numbers to the game's elite, but 710 seems like they almost forgot about Straw.

Roger Jongewaard never would've overlooked him. Multiple pages in my Strawberry binder are filled with this '88 Topps card.


Franklin said...

I was waiting for you to get to the 1988 cards. The Topps and Fleer are two of my favorite Straw cards.

I agree that the 1998 Topps Straw is one of the best cards ever. I love the photo that they used.

Just an aside - you ever notice how Topps (and the others) never updated their vital stats for the players. Straw broke into the Majors at 6'-6", 190 lbs. By 1998, he had added at least 20lbs of muscle, but yet you'd still think he was a string bean by looking at his cards.

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