Thursday, March 17, 2011

Cubs Team Issued Set, 1996

When I was putting my Cubs team issued sets together a year ago, I relied heavily on the Standard Catalog to tell me what sets the Cubs put out. The catalog didn't list a set for 1996, so I never looked for one.

Then I got a bunch of Cubs schedules and the 1996 schedule had a listing for a baseball card giveaway on August 18, sponsored by Gatorade. I went back and double checked the catalog to see if I had just missed it, but there was no Gatorade Cubs set listed for 1996, though 1995 and 1997 were in the catalog.

A quick ebay search turned up a 1996 set, which I bought. It seemed odd that the 1996 set was missing from the Standard, so when I emailed editor Bob Lemke about the Jim Hickman card, I also asked him about the 1996 set. His response was that he was familiar with the 1996 set, but had never seen a checklist.

Well, that has changed, since I emailed him the complete 27 card checklist. One unique thing about this set is that the cards were actually numbered like Topps cards. Usually the only number on Cubs cards was the player's uniform number. But these had actual card numbers, in the bottom left hand corner. The 25 players were numbered in alphabetical order (which is why Sandberg is #18), manager Jim Riggleman was #26 and the coaches card was #27.

This is the back of Ryne Sandberg's card, which you can see is #18. And as with most of the Cubs issued cards, these were oversized, at 4 1/4" x 2 7/8".

Here are the fronts of all 27 cards, featuring an unspectacular team that finished in fourth place


  1. The Standard Catalog has a similar absence between the Royals 1993 & 1995 sets. The 1994 team set shows up on eBay a couple time a year, but isn't cataloged. It matches the design of the Rockies 1994 team set.

  2. I always wanted to pick up the standard cataloge, but balk at the price. I think I'm gonna start getting them as it seems like it's a useful tool.

  3. Shhhh....don't tell Bob, but I buy mine 6 months to a year after it comes out, from Amazon, and it costs only a couple bucks. I also update only every couple years; I've got 2008 and picked up 2010 a few months ago.

  4. Nice find! I love discovering sets that aren't cataloged. :-)