1991 Topps parallels – Carlton Fisk

30 04 2016

1991 Topps

Card I selected:  #170 – Carlton Fisk

Back to a Hall of Famer for my pick in the 1991 set.  This is one of the best photos in a set stocked full of great photos.  It’s definitely my favorite action photo.

# of cards (including the Topps card):  6

The parallel sets in 1991 include:

  • O-Pee-Chee
  • Tiffany
  • Desert Shield
  • Micro
  • Cracker Jack

Scans:

1991 Topps #170

1991 Topps best action Fisk

1991 Topps Fisk back

1991 O-Pee-Chee #170

1991 Topps best action Fisk

1991 OPC Fisk back

Like 1990, the Canadian version of the Topps set was no different on the front.  And the set was again as large as the regular Topps set – 792 cards.

Here are the differences for this card:

  • The copyright on the bottom of the back says O-Pee-Chee and notes the card was printed in Canada.
  • Any wording on the back is in both English and French.
  • The card is printed on white stock unlike the grey of the regular Topps card.

1991 Topps Tiffany #170

1991 Topps best action Fisk

1991 Topps Tiffany Fisk back

For the 8th and final year, Topps issued a Tiffany variation in factory set form, printed on white cardstock with glossy coating on the front.  This set had the lowest print run in of any other year – less than 5,000.  The 1991 Tiffany set came in a blue box.

1991 Topps Desert Shield #170

1991 Topps Desert Shield Fisk

1991 Topps Fisk back

Topps printed special edition parallel cards of the 1991 Topps set for armed servicemen in the Persian Gulf.  There is a gold foil Desert Shield logo in the upper right corner of the cards – they were issued in packs and are pretty scarce.  Other than that, they are exactly the same as the regular set.

1991 Topps Micro #170

1991 Topps Micro Fisk

1991 Topps Micro Fisk back

OK, this was just a bad idea, but starting in 1991 Topps produced a “micro” set for the first time.  They’d go on to issue these for three years.  This set was issued in factory form – the cards measure 1″ x 1-3/8″.  Other than the fact they are ridiculously small, they are the same as the main set.

1991 Topps Cracker Jack #2

1991 Topps Cracker Jack Fisk

1991 Topps Cracker Jack Fisk back

Topps backed a 72-card set to be inserted into boxes of Cracker Jack in 1991.  The cards were based on the 1991 Topps set.  The cards are a little bigger than the Micro set – but not much!  They measure 1-1/4″ by 1 3/4″.  Other than the size, the front is identical.  The backs are orange and have a completely different set-up.

The “Rainbow”:

1991 Topps Fisk rainbow

Any sets I didn’t get:  Not really, though there are a ton of different minor back variations I’ve read about that have to do with how dark the red is, or how bold the 40th anniversary water stamp logo is on the back.

Other cards I would have liked to do:  Wade Boggs or Roger Clemens.

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1990 Topps & Traded parallels – Joe Carter

29 04 2016

1990 Topps

Card I selected:  #580 – Joe Carter, #20T – Joe Carter

It’s a 2nd straight non-HOF-er, but, like Eric Davis, Joe Carter was a helluva player in his day.  More notably to this subset of my Lifetime Topps project – I’m including the Topps Traded sets for this one.  The reason is – there are 2 parallels in 1990 Topps that are unique to Topps Traded.

# of cards (including the Topps & Traded card):  7

The parallel sets for 1990 Topps include:

  • O-Pee-Chee
  • Tiffany

The parallel sets for 1990 Topps Traded include:

  • Gray Back
  • Traded Tiffany
  • Topps Traded Mylar Test

Scans:

1990 Topps #580

1990 Topps Joe Carter

1990 Topps Joe Carter back

1990 O-Pee-Chee #580

1990 O-Pee-Chee Joe Carter

1990 O-Pee-Chee Joe Carter back

The Canadian version changed up a bit in 1990.  And by changed – I mean the OPC set was now actually much closer to the Topps set.  It was now 792 cards and a full parallel (instead of half) of the Topps set.  The Topps logo now adorned the front of the card and the corner of the back (below the number) instead of an O-Pee-Chee logo.

Here are the remaining differences for this card:

  • The card stock is slightly lighter material, though it doesn’t seem as pronounced of a difference as it did in previous years.
  • The copyright on the bottom of the back says O-Pee-Chee and notes the card was printed in Canada.
  • Any wording on the back is in both English and French.

1990 Topps Tiffany #580

1990 Topps Joe Carter

1990 Topps Tiffany Joe Carter back

For the 7th year, Topps issued a Tiffany variation in factory set form, printed on white cardstock with glossy coating on the front.  The 1990 Tiffany set came in a red box and had a production of 15,000 sets.

1990 Topps Traded #20T

1990 Topps Traded Joe Carter

1990 Topps Traded Tiffany Joe Carter back

1990 Topps Traded gray back #20T

1990 Topps Traded Joe Carter

1990 Topps Traded Joe Carter back

In addition to the factory set form that the Traded set had always been issued, Topps released wax packs for Traded in 1990.  This was a new thing that only held for the 1990 set.  Unlike the factory sets, the cards in the wax packs were printed on the same gray cardstock as the base set.

1990 Topps Traded Tiffany #20T

1990 Topps Traded Joe Carter

1990 Topps Traded Tiffany Joe Carter back

There was a Tiffany version as well, with 15,000 sets produced just like the regular Topps set.  The Tiffany set had a glossy finish on the front and was printed on white cardstock just like the regular factory set of 1990 Topps Traded.

1990 Topps Traded Mylar Test

1990 Topps Mylar Test Joe Carter

1990 Topps Mylar Test Joe Carter back

Topps produced 6 experimental Mylar stickers of cards from the Traded set.  These cards were early test runs of the finest / chrome technology.  And they cost a pretty penny these days.

The “Rainbow”:

1988 Topps Joe Carter rainbow

Any sets I didn’t get:  There’s no others that I know of.

Other cards I would have liked to do:  If I wanted to include the Mylar test set – it limits the number of guys I could include to 6.  Nolan Ryan and Keith Hernandez were 2 other guys I would have considered.





1989 Topps parallels – Eric Davis

28 04 2016

1989 Topps

Card I selected:  #330 – Eric Davis

After 7 Hall of Famers in the first 9 years, I’m going with one of my favorite players for the 1989 set.  That would be Eric Davis.  I don’t know if this is the best Eric Davis Topps card, but it’s up there.  It looks like a double in the gap, maybe more.  I’m also back to just 2 parallels in 1989.

# of cards (including the Topps card):  3

The parallel sets in 1989 include:

  • O-Pee-Chee
  • Tiffany

Scans:

1989 Topps #330

1989 Topps Eric Davis

1989 Topps Davis back

1989 O-Pee-Chee #330

1989 OPC Davis

1989 OPC Davis back

The Canadian version was again half the size of the Topps set.  Since Davis was in the first half of the set, his OPC card has the same number as his Topps card.  I’m surprised how few cards I’ve picked out of these parallels where it’s different.

Here are the differences for this card:

  • The “O-Pee-Chee” logo on the front replaces the Topps logo in the top corner.
  • On some of the cards (not this one), the card number is different.
  • The copyright on the bottom of the back says O-Pee-Chee and notes the card was printed in Canada.
  • The card is printed on white card stock.
  • Any wording on the back is in both English and French.
  • It says O-Pee-Chee on the back instead of “Topps”.

1989 Topps Tiffany #330

1989 Topps Tiffany Davis

1989 Topps Tiffany Davis back

For the 6th time, Topps issued a Tiffany variation in factory set form, printed on white cardstock with glossy coating on the front.  The 1989 Tiffany set had production cut back a little bit from the previous 2 years – “limited” to 15,000 sets after nearly twice that in 1987 and 1988.

The “Rainbow”:

1989 Topps Davis rainbow

Any sets I didn’t get:  There’s no others that I know of.

Other cards I would have liked to do:  Bobby Bonilla, Jose Canseco, Julio Franco or Mike Schmidt.  It was Schmidt’s last card, and I listed that as my favorite card in the 1989 Topps set.  But Schmidt was in this parallel thing for his 1986 card, so I had to pick someone else.  Glad I could get my favorite player into the set!





1988 Topps parallels – Wade Boggs (and Tom Browning)

27 04 2016

1988 Topps

Card I selected:  #200 – Wade Boggs

The 1988 set is one from my early days of collecting; it has a lot of nostalgia for me.  I remember organizing the cards based on guys who made the All-Star team that year – because I went to the 1988 All-Star Game.  Wade Boggs was one of those players, and I’ve dubbed his card as my best card of the 1988 set.

There’s something I need to address for the parallels in this set, however.  1988 had the standard 2 as far as Topps parallels go – there was O-Pee-Chee and Tiffany.  Tiffany was a full parallel, and O-Pee-Chee was again half the size of the Topps set.  But there’s one additional card that parallels the Topps set.  It’s the Topps Cloth cards, which were a pretty rare test set.  The problem is, I think the O-Pee-Chee and Cloth sets are mutually exclusive.  I haven’t checked every card, but I’ve gone through about 15-20 of them on Beckett’s site.  And none of the cards in the Cloth set are also in the O-Pee-Chee set.  So I think it’s impossible to get a full rainbow of one card here.  What I’ve decided to do in circumstances like this, are to still get a version of the “misfit” card.  I thought about getting the Boggs All-Star card, which does have a cloth version, but I picked Tom Browning’s card.  Basically, because I was able to find it on eBay for a decent price.

# of cards (including the Topps card):  4

The parallel sets in 1988 include:

  • O-Pee-Chee
  • Tiffany
  • Cloth Test

Scans:

1988 Topps #200

1988 Topps Wade Boggs

1988 Topps Boggs back

1984 O-Pee-Chee #200

1988 O-Pee-Chee Wade Boggs

1988 O-Pee-Chee Boggs back

The Canadian version of the Topps set was, again, half the size of the Topps set (396 cards).  Boggs is in the first half of the set, so his OPC card has the same number as his Topps card.

Here are the differences for this card:

  • The “O-Pee-Chee” logo on the front replaces the Topps logo in the lower corner.
  • On some of the cards (not this one), the card number is different.
  • The copyright on the bottom of the back says O-Pee-Chee and notes the card was printed in Canada.
  • The card is printed on white card stock.
  • Any wording on the back is in both English and French.
  • It says O-Pee-Chee on the back instead of “Topps”.

1984 Topps Tiffany #200

1988 Topps Tiffany Wade Boggs

1988 Topps Tiffany Boggs back

For the 5th time, Topps issued a Tiffany variation in factory set form, printed on white cardstock with glossy coating on the front.  Like the year before, the 1988 Tiffany set was a lot more plentiful than the first 3 versions – it was “limited” to 25,000 sets.

1988 Topps Cloth Test #NNO (Tom Browning)

1988 Topps Cloth Tom Browning

1988 Topps Cloth Browning back

Topps created a test issue called “Topps Cloth”.  This was an experimental release of 121 cards from the base set printed on textured paper, similar to higher-quality paper towels.  These cards were pretty rare, which is why I went with Tom Browning – I could find his card for a decent price!  I could have got Boggs in his All-Star subset.  But that generally goes for around 50 bucks, which I’d rather keep away from.

 

The “Rainbow”:

1988 Topps Boggs rainbow

1988 Topps Cloth Tom Browning

Any sets I didn’t get:  There were 2-pocket folders with reprints of some of the 1988 Topps cards.  These were very popular when I was in the 2nd grade; I used to have Eric Davis.  Boggs does have a  folder, but I’m not counting that for the ones above – it needs to fit in a binder (those are closer to being the binder than fitting in the binder).

There’s a Don Mattingly card called “World of Baseball” that Topps created.  I don’t know much about it, except that it’s not a cheap buy.  I don’t really consider it a parallel, since it uses a different picture from Mattingly’s regular card.  It is an interesting “other” type card.

Other cards I would have liked to do:

I really like the cards of Dave Stewart, Bo Jackson and Jose Canseco.  And Eric Davis has a cool card, as he always does.  But he’ll get in this shindig next year!





1987 Topps parallels – Kevin Mitchell

26 04 2016

1987 Topps

Card I selected:  #653 – Kevin Mitchell

This is the first of these parallel posts where I’ve picked a really great action shot.  Last year’s card (Mike Schmidt) was a very good card that featured an action shot.  But it was all about the guy in the photo.  While Mitchell did win an MVP, he’s by no means an all-time great.  But this play at the plate is an all-time great photograph on a Topps baseball card.

Topps Super was discontinued after 1986, so I’ve only got 3 cards in this mini set.

# of cards (including the Topps card):  3

The parallel sets in 1987 include:

  • O-Pee-Chee
  • Tiffany

Scans:

1987 Topps #653

1987 Topps Mitchell

1987 Topps Kevin Mitchell back

1987 O-Pee-Chee #307

1987 OPC Kevin Mitchell

1987 OPC Kevin Mitchell back

The Canadian version was again half the size of the Topps set.  Since Mitchell was in the second half of the set, his OPC card has a different number from his Topps card.

Here are the differences for this card:

  • The “O-Pee-Chee” logo on the front replaces the Topps logo in the bottom left.  The name tag is a lighter color on the O-Pee-Chee card.
  • On some of the cards (including this one), the card number is different.
  • The copyright on the bottom of the back says O-Pee-Chee and notes the card was printed in Canada.
  • The card is printed on white card stock.
  • Any wording on the back is in both English and French.
  • It says O-Pee-Chee on the back instead of “Topps”.

1987 Topps Tiffany #653

1987 Topps Tiffany Kevin Mitchell

1987 Topps Tiffany Kevin Mitchell back

For the 4th time, Topps issued a Tiffany variation in factory set form, printed on white cardstock with glossy coating on the front.  The 1987 Tiffany set had 6 times the production run as the previous 2 years – “limited” to 30,000 sets.

The “Rainbow”:

1987 Topps Kevin Mitchell rainbow

Any sets I didn’t get:  There’s no others that I know of.

Other cards I would have liked to do:

This was an easy choice.  But I would have picked the Nolan Ryan if not for this card.





1986 Topps parallels – Mike Schmidt

25 04 2016

1986 Topps

Card I selected:  #200 – Mike Schmidt

In 1985, I picked Gary Mathews for my parallel.  In 1986, I’m back on the Hall of Fame train.  I went with my personally deemed “best card” from the 1986 Topps set – Mike Schmidt.  The 1986 set is not one known for great action shots, or great anything shots for that matter.  But this is a really good one, and it’s of Mike Schmidt.  It looks like he just went yard.

# of cards (including the Topps card):  4

The parallel sets in 1986 include:

  • O-Pee-Chee
  • Tiffany
  • Super

Scans:

1986 Topps #200

86 Topps Schmidt

1986 Topps Schmidt back

1986 O-Pee-Chee #200

1986 OPC Schmidt

1986 OPC Schmidt back

The Canadian version was, as always, half the size of the Topps set.  Since Schmidt was in the first half of the set, his OPC card has the same number.

Here are the differences for this card:

  • The “O-Pee-Chee” logo on the front replaces the Topps logo in the top right. It has a yellow box as background that’s not on the Topps version.
  • On some of the cards (not this one), the card number is different.
  • The copyright on the bottom of the back says O-Pee-Chee and notes the card was printed in Canada.
  • The card is printed on white card stock.
  • Any wording on the back is in both English and French.
  • It says O-Pee-Chee on the back instead of “Topps”.

1986 Topps Tiffany #200

1986 Topps Tiffany Schmidt

1986 Topps Tiffany Schmidt back

For the 3rd time, Topps issued a Tiffany variation in factory set form, printed on white cardstock with glossy coating on the front.  The 1986 Tiffany set had the same production run as the previous year – limited to 5,000 sets.

1986 Topps Super #49

86 Topps Schmidt

1986 Topps Super Schmidt back

Also for the 3rd year, Topps also made a set that was much larger (4-7/8 x 6-7/8) than the base, again with 60 cards.  The numbering is obviously different from the base set.  Topps “Super” cards came in 1-card packs, 36 per box.  Other than the size and numbering difference, these cards have an extra bit of write-up at the bottom, highlighting the player’s team leading stats.

The “Rainbow”:

1986 Topps Schmidt rainbow

86 Topps Schmidt

Any sets I didn’t get:  There’s no others that I know of.

Other cards I would have liked to do:

I would probably have picked the Tony Perez card, which has Eric Davis on it.  But he didn’t have a card in the Topps Super set.  Pete Rose has a really notable card, Rod Carew has a nice last card in this set, and Bo Diaz was one of my favorite pictures.  Only Rose has a card in the Super set, and while card #1 of the set would have been a good pick, I just like the Schmidt card better.





1985 Topps parallels – Gary Matthews

24 04 2016

1985 Topps

Card I selected:  #210 – Gary Matthews

As I promised yesterday – in 1985 I’m finally picking a guy who isn’t a Hall-of-Famer.  In 1985, Topps made a pretty rare test version of 132 of their cards in “mini” format.  They also made a partial parallel, 60-card set of extra-large cards called Topps Super.  If you cross-check the two checklists, there aren’t many guys in both sets.  Gary Matthews is one of those players, and I kind of liked his card.  The Cubbie blue combined with the short team name seems to go well with the 1985 Topps design.

# of cards (including the Topps card):  5

The parallel sets in 1985 include:

  • O-Pee-Chee
  • Tiffany
  • “Mini” test
  • Super

Scans:

1985 Topps #210

1985 Topps Gary Matthews

1985 Topps Gary Matthews back

1985 O-Pee-Chee #210

1985 OPC Gary Matthews

1985 OPC Gary Matthews back

The Canadian version of the Topps set was, again, 396 cards; half the size of the Topps set.  Matthews got the same number in both sets – there’s a 50/50 proposition for that.  If a player is in the OPC set, he’ll have the same number if he’s in the first half (#1-396) of the Topps set.

Here are the differences for this card:

  • The “O-Pee-Chee” logo on the front replaces the Topps logo in the top left.  It has a yellow box as background that isn’t there on the Topps version.
  • On some of the cards (not this one), the card number is different.
  • The copyright on the bottom of the back says O-Pee-Chee and notes the card was printed in Canada.
  • The card is printed on white card stock.
  • Any wording on the back is in both English and French.
  • It says O-Pee-Chee on the back instead of “Topps”.

1985 Topps Tiffany #210

1985 Topps Tiffany Gary Matthews

1985 Topps Tiffany Gary Matthews back

For the 2nd year, Topps issued a Tiffany variation in factory set form, printed on white cardstock with glossy coating on the front.  The 1985 Tiffany set had half the production of the previous year, limited to 5,000 sets, and is one of the most expensive sets of the 80’s given the plethora of rookies and short production.

1985 Topps Mini Test #210

1985 Topps Mini Gary Matthews

1985 Topps Mini Gary Matthews back

As part of its relationship with O-Pee-Chee, Topps tested printing equipment in Canada by printing variations of certain cards in the base set that were ~10% smaller than the base cards (2-3/8″ x 3-9/32″).  The cards were printed on white cardboard stock.  Only 1 sheet was printed, so there were only 132 cards printed.  These cards made it out the backdoor in Canada, and now can cost quite a bit if you want one of the star cards that were on that sheet.  I got this one for 10 bucks on eBay.  I’ve read estimates of around 100 of these cards out there.

1985 Topps Super #19

1985 Topps Super Gary Matthews

1985 Topps Super Gary Matthews back

Also for the 2nd straight year, Topps also made a set that was larger (4-7/8 x 6-7/8) than the base, this time with twice as many cards (60).  The numbering is obviously different from the base set, and this .  Called Topps “Super”, these cards came in 1-card packs, 36 per box.  Other than the size and numbering difference, these cards have an extra bit of write-up at the bottom, highlighting the player’s statistics.

The “Rainbow”:

1985 Topps Gary Matthews rainbow

1985 Topps Super Gary Matthews

Any sets I didn’t get:  There’s no others that I know of.

Other cards I would have liked to do:

Pete Rose, Darryl Strawberry, Rod Carew, Tony Gwynn and Eddie Murray were all great cards, but weren’t in the Mini set.  Joe Morgan was a cool card, too.  It’s his last card; he played with the A’s to wrap up his career in 1984.  His OPC card has wording on the front denoting his retirement.  Alas, while he has a mini card, it would be pretty expensive, and he wasn’t in the Topps Super set.  Matthews seemed like a good choice compared to the few other guys who would also have 5 cards.