Friday, February 6, 2009

Donruss Diamond Dud

When Donruss and Fleer issued their first sets in 1981, that was the beginning of the end of my card collecting days. I bought the complete sets from all three in '81 and '82, but I was feeling forced to get them all or else it would seem like my collection was incomplete. That left a bad taste in my mouth. Plus, those first two years of Donruss and Fleer had some pretty crummy looking cards. In 1983 I decided to stick to Topps only. When even more companies arrived in the late '80's, I was done (for a while).

The only thing I liked about Donruss was the Diamond King subset. It was a new concept and the cards didn't look like anything Topps put out. The first set, in 1982, had nine future hall-of-famers, plus Pete Rose. It was a pretty impressive collection of player.

The nine 1982 Diamond King Hall of Fame Players

Well, it was almost an impressive collection.

Because the 1982 Diamond King for the Chicago Cubs was Ivan DeJesus.

Rose, Carter, Carew, Niekro, Ryan, Brett, Seaver, Winfield, Fisk, Smith, and DeJesus?

Yes, Ivan DeJesus. The holder of a .194 batting average in 1981 (along with 0 home runs and 13 RBI's) - Your Chicago Cubs 1982 Diamond King. That tells you just how lousy the Cubs were in 1981. The best Donruss could come up with was a .194 hitter!

However,,,,,DeJesus didn't even play for the Cubs in 1982. He was traded in January of '82 to the Phillies in exchange for shortstop Larry Bowa and a throw-in, unknown rookie named....

...Ryne Sandberg.

I guess DeJesus had a little value to the Cubs after all.

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