Thursday, March 24, 2011

I Caved: 60 Years of Topps

Here are more of the inserts that I said I wasn't going to buy.

The 60 Years of Topps would have been much better if it wasn't already done last year. There were six Cubs last year. This year there are only four. A plus is that they are four different players; last year the six Cubs were Ernie Banks three times, Ryne Sandberg twice, and Lou Brock. I'm much happier with four different players. Last year I got both versions of the card; this year I'm skipping the original back cards since...well, I've got the originals, so why bother with a reprint!

Up first is a 1955 Ernie Banks. The '55 card was Ernie's second Topps issue.

Next is 1977 Bruce Sutter. That was Sutter's breakout season. With his work as a closer, the Cubs were flying high in 1977, and on June 30 they had an 8 1/2 game lead in the NL East. But Sutter got hurt in mid-July and by early August the Cubs were in second place.

Here is something very funny on the back: the card says, "White made its return as the predominant design color (framing elegant photography), in the 660 card set of 1977." Elegant photography??? Yea, that is something Topps was really known for in the '70s! Ha!!

The third Cub is a real odd choice, 1987 Dennis Eckersley. By this time in his career, Eck was a drunk and just about finished. In fact, he didn't even play for the Cubs in 1987 (he was traded to the A's just before the season began), which makes the selection of this card even stranger. The back of the 60 YOT card mentions that for the first time since 1972, the front of the card didn't list a players position, and then says that it was ironic since that was the season Eckersley was moved to the bullpen.

Wouldn't it have been better to use this card and say that he was moved to the A's?

The final Cubs player is a young Greg Maddux. This 1988 card was Maddux's first appearance in a Topps base set. The back touts the 3-D effect of the card because of the way the team name was obscured by parts of the player.

And just for kicks, here are the originals (on the left) side by side with the reprints. Its been mentioned on other blogs that the typeset is slightly different on the reprints. You can see that for yourself here.


  1. The 55 Banks is a great looking card.

  2. Thanks for posting the photos. I love seeing the pics of these old cards.

  3. Interesting on the comparisons. So it looks like they actually rebuild the cards instead of simply reprinting from the original negatives or whatever.

    Topps should just stop issuing all these rehashes and do something interesting like using new pictures for old cards that just looked terrible. Replace airbrushed cards with new photos in the correct uniforms, choose better pictures where the originals were unimpressive, etc.

  4. Jason...great idea on updating ugly cards, but then Topps would be admitting that they made ugly cards. That would be a first for Topps.