Recap – Completed decade, a last look Topps in the 1980’s

28 05 2013

Just like my top 10, I wanted to put together one post that summarizes everything I just did from the 1980’s decade in Topps.  I still have some inserts to finish up to wrap a complete bow on the decade, but the main part of my lifetime Topps project is done for 1980-1989.

The majority of the information below is stuff I’ve covered previously – this is a summary.  If you want the greater detail for some of this, click on “Topps 1980s” over in the right hand column.

Info about my decade:

How I put the decade together:

A total of 8,976 for the decade, including the Topps Traded sets.

  • 4,102 from wax boxes
  • 1,939 from other forms of original Topps packaging – 1,240 from vending boxes, 296 from Jumbo Packs, 279 from a Cello Box, 122 from Rack Packs, 2 from a 1983 Michigan Test pack
  • 1,301 from trades
  • 1,188 from purchasing the Traded boxed sets
  • 380 cards I already had at home in good condition (all 1986)
  • 41 single card purchases – 38 from Sportlots, 1 from a card shop (80 Schmidt), 1 from COMC (83 Ripken), 1 from eBay (82 Ripken)
  • 25 from other methods – 13 from a Target Re-pack and 12 from the Diamond Giveaway

Card that completed my decade: 1982 Topps #21 – Cal Ripken RC

1982 Topps Ripken RC

Decade composition (number that are from Topps Traded in parentheses if applicable):

  • 7,894 individual player cards (1,118 of which are in Traded).
  • 78 Future Stars tri-player cards.
  • 37 Team USA player cards (21 from Traded).
  • 21 Draft Pick cards.
  • 274 Manager cards (40 from Traded).
  • 182 Team Leaders.
  • 176 All-Stars.
  • 52 Record Breakers.
  • 40 In Action.
  • 39 League Leaders.
  • 34 Super Veterans.
  • 20 Turn Back the Clock.
  • 18 Season Highlights.
  • 18 Active Leaders.
  • 14 Father Son.
  • 6 Tribute.
  • 4 Post-Season Highlights.
  • 69 checklists.

Representation of the decade: The 1980-1989 Topps sets should, in theory, tell the story of the 1979-1988 MLB seasons.  Since I’m including 1989 Topps Traded, it also includes rookies from the 1989 season.  So it isn’t quite the decade of the 80′s when you do this comparison – it’s 11 years instead.  During those 11 seasons, 2,411 different players graced the fields of Major League ballparks.

Of the cards from the base and future stars subset cards listed above, there are 1,828 different players featured.

To this number, there are 7 players from subsets to add because they played in the “decade” but didn’t have any regular Topps cards.  On the flip side, there are 8 players to subtract who had regular cards but didn’t actually play in the decade.  You can see the details of who they are in my earlier post.

Those 1,827 players represent 75.8% of the 2,411 players from 1979-1989.

Last active player from this decade: #122T – Omar Vizquel, 1989 Topps Traded

89 TT Vizquel

Vizquel played his last game for Toronto on October 3rd last year, the last game of the season.  The Blue Jays moved him back to short for one last game after he’d only played 2-3x a week at 2B or 3B over the final 2 months.  Unfortunately, he didn’t turn a double play that game, though no player in history has turned more.  He went 1 for 3 to finish his career with 2,877 hits, the most of any player from Venezuela.  He has over 400 stolen bases, and over 1400 runs.  Possibly the greatest defensive shortstop in history, he has the highest fielding percentage of any MLB shortstop, he’s played in the most games at that position, and his game on October 3rd is the standard for the oldest player to play that position (a record he’d broken earlier in the year).  He beats out Jamie Moyer, the only other player with a Topps card from the 80’s to play in 2012.

Player with the most cards in the set: Pete Rose – 33 cards

Take a look at the post for the details and the card pictures, but he had 8 base cards, 1 Topps Traded card, 5 Manager cards, and 19 subsets (6 from the 86 Tribute).

First Card and the Hundreds: George Brett – 9 cards

I actually didn’t do this in an earlier post, but George Brett has the most “special number” cards.  He has 9, which is one more than Reggie Jackson and two more than Mike Schmidt.  Reggie had a special number in all 8 years he had a card – but didn’t have a Topps card in 1988 or 1989 after he’d retired.  What puts Brett over the top is 1981 – he had a League Leader card as #1 with Bill Buckner for winning the batting title, so he had 2 “special numbers” in that set.

Highest book value: 1982 Topps Traded #98T – Cal Ripken RC

82 TT HOFers

Books for around 150 bucks.  To find a really good copy, it might cost even more than that…

Most notable card: I had to go with a 3-way tie here.  All of these are fairly significant cards in the history of the hobby.

  • 1982 Topps Traded #98T – Cal Ripken RC (see above)
  • 1980 Topps #482 – Rickey Henderson RC (see below)
  • 1985 Topps #401 – Mark McGwire OLY RC

85T RCs McGwire

Best card (my opinion): 1980 Topps #482 – Rickey Henderson

1980 Henderson Ryan Ozzie

Second best card (also my opinion): #1989 Topps Traded #41T – Ken Griffey Jr.

89 TT Griffey Jr

I like that this also serves as the “best Traded card”.

Best subset card: 1988 Topps Record Breaker #4 – Eddie Murray

1988 Topps Eddie Murray RB

Favorite action photo: #111 – Carlton Fisk IA

1982 Topps IA Fisk

Favorite non-action photo: 1980 Topps #400 – George Foster

1980 Big Red 3

My Favorite Reds card: 1986 Topps #206 – Pete Rose RB

86T Pete Rose cards




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