Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Skybox 1999 E-X Century

 Nope, they didn't name the 1999 version E-X2002.  Instead, it was called E-X Century.  And like the previous two names, this makes no sense since the new century wouldn't start for another two years.  I guess they wanted to get a head start.

The set is made up of 120 cards, which is a bit of a bump from 1998.  The cards are again printed on clear plastic.  I was able to get the four Cubs for $1.17, less than 30¢ each.  I'm sure that you had to pay a whole lot more than that per card back in 1999.



Tuesday, January 30, 2024

1998 E-X2001

 If the 1997 set can be called "2000" for some unknown reason, you might as well call the 1998 set "2001," which is exactly what was done.

Skybox went crazy with the card production.  The cards are printed on clear plastic.  The design has some shine chrome-like stuff on the left side and the right side remains clear.  The set has just 100 cards and five of them are Cubs.  I was able to pick up the five cards from less that $3.00 total, so it looks like the cards haven't been able to keep their value.



Monday, January 29, 2024

1997 E-X 2000

 This brand keeps morphing from year to year.  The Emotion name is not mentioned any more on the 1997 set.  Emotion is shorted to just E, and while last year was E X-L, the 1997 set is called E-2000.  I'm not sure what the 2000 stands for.  The set has just 100 cards, so its not the set size.  It's a 1997 set, so the year 2000 is still a ways into the future.

The price of the cards changed dramatically.  A pack still cost $4.99, but each pack contained just two cards.  It was eight cards in 1996 and seven in '97, but yikes, down to just two cards seems harsh.

The 1996 set had three different colored borders and in 1997 they kept that theme and added another color. The big change was going from paper borders to a chrome-type border.  Also, the player is cut out and pasted against a cellophane background.  My assumption is that these two changes in production explain the bump in price.

With the disappearance of the Emotion label, the descriptive words seen on the front of the cards during the first two years is gone.

Three Cubs were in the set, and they are the three big names you'd expect, Grace, Sandberg, and Sosa.

Sunday, January 28, 2024

Five Random Cubs Cards

I've got 21,620 Cubs cards from 316 different brands listed on a spreadsheet. A random number generator picked five cards, one each from the past several decades.

1900s - 1970s: 1965 Topps #596 Don Landrum Landrum was the Cubs full-time center fielder in 1965.  He wasn't anything overwhelming, but the Cubs were able to sell high with him and he was traded to the Giants in a deal that brought Bill Hand and Randy Hundley to the Cubs. 

1980s: 1988 Star Gold #79 Mark Grace Last week the RNG picked a Grace card from Star Silver and this week we get one from Star Gold.  I wonder what the odds for that would be?

1990s: 1996 Denny's Artist's Proof #5 Sammy Sosa  Pretty funky looking card, with the 3-D graphic on the left and a clear picture on the right.  The Artists Proof cards came one per 360 packs, so you'd need to have a Grand Slam breakfast every day for a year to come up with one.

2000s: 2000 Fleer Traded #58 Team Rookies  We have 12 major league ABs with a .167 batting average on the left and a career record of 14-30 along with an ERA of 6.15 on the right.  The Cubs system was pretty thin in 2000!

2010s: 2016 Topps Now #571 October 11, 2016  The Cubs ninth inning comeback, as they went turned a 5-2 deficit into a 6-5 victory, was an amazing thing to watch.  

Saturday, January 27, 2024

Eighties Alphabetically - Baseball Legends

 The Baseball Legends set was put out by Pacific over three years, from 1988 through 1990.  I'm only showing the first two since this is Eighties Alphabetically.  The set consists of cards of former players and broadcasters

The card design is identical for the 1988 and 1989 cards.  The color of the area around the name and picture varied from team to team.  The Cubs cards have that part red, except for the card for broadcaster Jack Brickhouse.  His is green and the only other cards with green are for players on the A's.  I have no idea why they make the Brickhouse card green.

Each year had 110 cards in the set.  None of the players in the first set were included in the second.  There is no team designation on the cards, so I went with cards that show a player in a Cubs uniform. Each year saw seven Cubs.

These are the cards from 1988.  The artwork on the Chuck Connors cards is the same as on the Baseball Magazine card we saw last Saturday.  

Friday, January 26, 2024

1996 Emotion XL

 The 1996 version of Emotion had a slight name change, adding the letters XL.  The full word "Emotion" is shortened to "E". The set has 100 more cards than in 1995, so I guess that is what made it "XL". The price was a bit larger, as now you got just seven cards in a $4.99 pack, one less card than before.

The design feature borders in one of three colors, green, maroon, and blue.  Each team's cards are numbered in alphabetical order.  The first players have a green border, then comes the maroon, and those with last names towards the end of the alphabet have blue borders.

The fronts also have an embossed insignia that includes the player's name and team.  It's one of, if not the largest insignia that I can recall on any set.

There are cards for ten Cubs players.  The first three have the green border, followed by four more in maroon, and the blue border is on the last three cards.

As there was in the previous set, each card features a descriptive word for the player.  The 

ten words are striding, control, precision, smooth, amazing, stormin', effort, flip, concentrate, and punishing.





Thursday, January 25, 2024

One Thing Leads to Another... 1995 Skybox Emotion

 One thing leads to another, or in today's case, one card leads to 62.

Reader Chad gifted me this card of Mark Grace.  It is from the insert set D-Fense, which was part of the 1996 set E-Motion XL.  

I was completely ignorant of the E-Motion sets, and Skybox in general.  So I did some digging and found twelve different sets put out by Skybox and I decided I should get them.  Most of the sets were 200-300 card sets with 5-8 Cubs cards in each. The cards were readily available on Sportlots for the most part.

With the exception of one card, I've got the project wrapped up and I'll be showing the results over the next several posts.

I start with the 1995 set, E-Motion.  This was a ultra premium set, with the card stock being double the thickness of regular cards.  A pack of eight cards set you back $4.99.

The cards design also includes a large-printed descriptive word for each of the 200 players in the set.  This was to complement the theme of the cards, emotion.  There is a blog that is going through the set with a post on each of the words if you want to dig a little deeper.

The six Cubs are intent, working, satisfied, lethal, style, and primed.



Wednesday, January 24, 2024

My First Most Wanted of 2024

 Well that didn't take long!  I was able to pick up my first most wanted card within the first three weeks of the year.

I found the 2023 Ryne Sandberg card from Select.  It shouldn't have been that difficult, but there just isn't much Select even available, much less the Sandberg card.  A dealer must have recently bought a bunch and he listed many cards from the set, including Ryno's.  I grabbed it immediately for $1.49.  Only three other copies of the card have been sold on eBay since late August, so I'm happy to finally have the card and to have gotten it for such a bargain price.

With the card in hand, I am finished with the 2023 Select Cubs team set.



These four are from the first level, #1-100, called Concourse.


Two Cubs were in the Premier level, #101-200.

The Diamond level has five Cubs.