Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Rest of the Cubs Inserts

I've got the last two insert sets that include Cubs.

Greg Maddux was included in the "Before They Were Great" set.  For Maddux, "Before They Were Great" would only apply to the 1986 and 1987 seasons.  Prior to the 1988 season, his big league career netted him a record of 8-18 and an ERA above 5.00 over 36 games.  Greatness arrived in 1988 when he went 18-8 to square up his career numbers.

The "Upper Class" set features a bunch of players as rookies and they back of the card tells how they did during their inaugural season.  Three Cubs were included.

Ernie Banks is included with the rookie class of 1954.  Question for Topps, though...why did you use a picture of Ernie Banks from 1969?

Ryne Sandberg was a rookie during the 1982 season.  He spent most of the year playing third base and was second in fielding among NL third baseman.

Greg Maddux rookie season was 1988 and he led NL rookies in starts (27) and strikeouts (101).  These facts come from the card.  He also led NL rookies in losses with 14 (but not the team, as Jamie Moyer had 15 losses).

I think the Upper Class set shows just how far Starlin Castro has fallen off of the Topps radar.  He played in 125 games as a rookie in 2010, hit .300, and was in just about every insert set in 2011.  It seemed like Topps couldn't get enough of him.  Fast forward to 2014 and he's not in a single set.  Maybe they're saving him for Series Two.

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