1982 Topps parallels – Dennis Eckersley

21 04 2016

1982 Topps

Card I selected:  #490 – Dennis Eckersley

There was a limited number of guys to select from in 1982 for a few reasons.  First, there were only 2 coca-cola teams sets in 1982; the Reds and the Red Sox.  So that limits me right away to 44 players from each team.  And it’s a bit smaller when you factor in the players who weren’t in the O-Pee-Chee set.  None of my selected “best” cards from 1982 are Red Sox or Reds.  I did pick Johnny Bench as my favorite Reds card, but it was a down year for Topps photographing Reds players.  It’s not even a great Johnny Bench card.  So I went with Eckersley as I liked the photo.  That’s the 2nd straight year I’m doing a Red Sox player.  Yuck.

# of cards (including the Topps card):  3

The parallel sets in 1982 include:

  • O-Pee-Chee
  • Coca Cola team set


1982 Topps #490

1982 Topps Eck

1982 Topps Eck back

1982 O-Pee-Chee #287

1982 Topps OPC Eck

1982 Topps OPC Eck back

The Canadian version of the Topps set.  The OPC set size increased to 396 cards, now exactly half of the Topps set which had been bumped up to 792.  Here are the differences for this card:

  • The “O-Pee-Chee” logo on the front replaces the Topps logo in the lower right.
  • The card number is different.
  • The position is spelled out in both English and French .
  • The copyright says O-Pee-Chee and notes the card was printed in Canada.
  • The card is printed on white card stock and tends to be poorly cut as cards from the early 80’s were for OPC.
  • Any wording on the back is in both English and French.
  • There’s an O-Pee-Chee wording on the back instead of “Topps”.

1982 Coca Cola Red Sox #5

1982 Topps Coke Eck

1982 Topps Coke Eck back

Topps issued 2 team sets in 1982 as a promotion with Coca-Cola.  Both 23-card sets feature 22 players from the team and an advertising card.  Here’s how you can differentiate these cards from the Topps version:

  • There is a square Coca-Cola logo in the lower left corner on the front, where the “hockey stick” bends.  For the Red Sox, there is also a logo for Brigham’s ice cream, a local New England favorite.  Eckersley’s signature is so long they had to move the placement on it for this card.
  • The card number is different.
  • The back is red instead of green.
  • The position on the back is just the abbreviation and they fit the player’s number next to it.
  • There’s a Brigham’s logo on the back where the Topps logo is.
  • There is copyright information regarding the Coke logo on the back.

The “Rainbow”:

1982 Topps Eck rainbow

Any sets I didn’t get:  There was a printing error that occurred on sheets for about half of the cards where the black ink didn’t print on the front.  The black line inside the white border and the player signature aren’t included.  Eckersley has a blackless variation.  I thought about including Topps blackless cards, but they aren’t cheap and I don’t think an error is really a parallel, even if it’s one that happened on about 120 different cards.

Other cards I would have liked to do:

  • My favorite cards from this set were Rickey Henderson, Nolan Ryan, Carlton Fisk’s In-Action subset, and Jon Matlack.  None of them are Reds or Red Sox, so I didn’t get to go after those guys for this idea.

Completed set & master set – one last look at 1982 Topps

13 01 2013

The 1982 Topps and Traded set is my 12th set completed in the project – and it completes the 80’s decade for regular cards for me!  I’ve also completed my “personal master set” for this year as well – which I’m defining as the base set, the traded set, and any regular inserts.  Here’s the “look back” I do for each completed set.

Also, because it completes the decade, look for a bunch of completed decade posts to be forthcoming this month.

Info about my set:

How I put the set together:

  • 408 cards from the wax box
  • 208 cards from a vending box
  • 158 cards from trades
  • 17 cards purchased from Sportlots
  • 1 card purchased on eBay

Card that completed my set: #21 – Cal Ripken RC (and Bob Bonner too! – I didn’t get this in either my wax or vending box, so I finally bucked up and bought a nice copy on eBay for 18 bucks in November)

1982 Topps Ripken RC

Read the rest of this entry »

1981 & 1982 Topps odd-ball sets

10 11 2011

Continuing with what I went over yesterday – here’s some of the odd-ball sets Topps issued from 1981 and 1982 that I hadn’t covered before.  I only have one to add from each of these year.

Other releases associated with the Topps flagship – 1981

#1 – Topps issued a 11 team sets in 1981 as a promotion with Coca-Cola.  Each of the 12-card sets features 11 players from the team and an advertising card.  The sets have the exact same design and photo as the base Topps cards, except there is a Coca-Cola logo in the upper right-hand corner.  The teams featured are the Reds, Tigers, Red Sox, Cubs, White Sox, Astros, Mets, Royals, Phillies, Pirates and Cardinals.

I remember having the Reds set of these cards, and particularly remember the Johnny Bench.

Other releases associated with the Topps flagship – 1982

#1 – Topps again issued a couple of team sets as a promotion with Coca-Cola, though it was only 2 teams this year – the Reds and Red Sox.  The cards carry an extra Coca-Cola logo on them, but are otherwise the same as the base set.  The Red Sox set was issued in Brigham’s ice cream stores and also carry their logo.  Each set contains 22 players and 1 header.  Cards of the Yankees were going to be issued – there are a few known in existence according to the SCD Standard Catalog (Gossage, Reggie, Cerone).

’90 Reds Catchup Post – 1982 Topps

7 01 2011

Piniella and Oester are back from 1981, and Rick Mahler, who was a reliever for the ’90 Reds, has his RC in the set and a subset card as the Braves’ team leader in ERA.

1982 – Lou Piniella, Ron Oester, Rick Mahler RC, Rick Mahler (TL)

1982 Topps Traded

3 10 2010

82 Traded Box

In 1982, Topps again issued its 132-card factory “Traded” set. The set was no longer numbered as an extension of the set, but carried its own designation as #1-132. It still has the same design as the base set. Similar to the sets from the 70’s, these cards now carry a “T” suffix on the card number. They are again organized in alphabetical order and again include players who switched teams, with some first-year players sprinkled in.


Two Big Red Machiners were traded to the Big Apple. Griffey Sr. was traded to the Yankees for 2 guys who would go on to play a total of 3 games for the Reds. George Foster, was traded to the Mets in a deal that was a little more successful.

Eric Shaw has an XRC in the set, but other than that there aren’t really many rookie cards. Most of the cards in this set are similar to Cal Ripken’s. Ripken has his first single-player card (as opposed to the “future stars” multi-card in the base set). There are 5 Hall of Famers in this set.

  • Reggie Jackson has a card reflecting his move back to California to play for the Angels
  • Fergie Jenkins is shown with his old team, the Chicago Cubs, whom he returned to via Free Agency
  • Gaylord Perry made the “Traded” set for the 2nd year in a row, signing with the Mariners, his 7th team and 8th stop
  • Ripken, as mentioned
  • Probably the 2nd best card in the set – Ozzie Smith is shown in his first card with the Cardinals


Jenkins, Ripken and Smith are featured with the teams on their Hall of Fame plaque. Winfield’s decision to wear a Padres cap, as opposed to a Yankees cap, was a bit controversial, though he spent over 1/3 of his career with both teams. No other player in the set will likely make the Hall in the future, or even should be considered.

I picked up the set on eBay; it was key to be sure the Ripken was in good shape, particularly after not even getting his base card in the regular set!

1982 Topps Scans

1 10 2010

Here are some of the more “historic” cards.  I’ve included the 2nd-tier (i.e., not Ripken) Rookies Cards. Out of these rookie cards, there is a future MVP in Bell, a future all-time saves leader (Smith), and a future World Series /ALCS (2x) MVP, and one of the more intimidating pitchers of my generation (Stewart). I liked the Braves card because Butler and Bedrosian, while not truly great players, had very good careers, and that isn’t common on these future stars cards (see my Ripken rant).  Also, 2 good 2nd year guys with some good shots (love the Mookie card), and the 2 more prominent individual stories in 1981.

7 future HOF-ers, all with some good-looking photos. So far, Dawson is 3 for 3 in having awesome looking pictures in the sets I’ve collected. Finally, a good pic of Lee May in the twilight of his career. Lee was a true slugger, holding an interesting distinction as the best player (by far) traded to set up the big red machine.

Finally, here’s some more cards I liked. Look closely at the two “leaders” cards featuring Henderson. Topps made sure to keep the costs low, ensuring they didn’t have to pay some freelance photographer twice to get Rickey’s grill on 2 separate subset cards! The next two cards are of players who had some interesting “moments” in 80’s baseball history. First is Brett. The “pine-tar incident” is a well-known story in baseball, though I didn’t realize that the Brett homer actually counted. After the Royals protested the game, the AL president actually upheld their appeal (that has to be rare). They replayed the game from the time the game ended – with Brett ejected for arguing and Gaylord Perry ejected for hiding the bat (Perry knew a thing or two about concealing foreign substances). Though the picture for this card is taken before the incident, which occurred in 1983, I think any 80’s Topps card of George doctoring up his bat is hilarious.

As mentioned in an earlier post, Rick’s “Blue Monday” home run was most likely the biggest in Dodgers history at that point. Though it was certainly surpassed by Gibson’s shot 7 years later – I’ll cover that in a future blog – it won a postseason series for the team in a year they won the World Series. That’s a good idea for a future post – the biggest home run(s) in each team’s history, and any cards that commemorate them. Monday is also famous for stopping a flag-burning incident in 1976 as a visiting member of the Cubs at Dodger Stadium.

The Dent and Fisk cards are two great examples of the in-action cards actually being great shots (sometimes they aren’t – the Mike Schmidt one is a pic of him standing up at 3rd base). I have no idea who Bobby Castillo is, but there’s no way in God’s green earth that is a legal pitching glove, or even a legal beer-league softball glove.

Finally, I’d like to point out that, in order to lead the league in saves in the late 70’s and early 80’s, it must have been required to have some crazy facial hair. Sutter and Fingers are two of the best examples, but I’d also submit Goose Gossage, Dan Quisenberry, Jeff Reardon, and Sparky Lyle.

1982 Topps Big Red Machine

30 09 2010

Big Red Machine card scans. I didn’t get Morgan or Geronimo, so those are swiped from the world wide web. Concepcion also has a sticker card insert.

Down to 4 players left who are still on the Reds; except for Bench, though, the ones that are still playing in Cincy still have quite a few years left. Not true for Morgan, Geronimo, and Perez. No card for Sparky this year since Topps temporarily abandoned the manager cards.

Here’s the subset cards – 7 in-action (everyone but Geronimo), 3 All-Stars, 2 Team Leaders and a Highlights:

Bob Bonner RC & 1982 vending box break

28 09 2010


That’s the best way to describe it. I think this is karma for putting the main card of the ’82 set on the top of my blog. I just opened my 1982 vending box. As mentioned in an earlier post, I bought this on ebay along with an ’81 vending box. Well, both the wax box and the vending box were missing the significant card in this set – #21, the Rookie Card for the up and coming Shortstop for the Orioles. Yes the Bob Bonner RC! This card also contained the RC for pitching prospect Jeff Schneider. Bonner went on to amass a total of 21 hits in the big leagues, while Schneider registered his lone save on August 25th, 1981 in Seattle. Interesting that, in 1982, Schneider was a 29 year-old “prospect”.

I didn’t pull the RC of these guys, whom I assume are wonderful human beings, but weren’t exactly the greatest ballplayers in the ’82 set. No, the reason it’s irking me that I didn’t get at least 1 copy of this card is the third-sacker sitting in between these career minor-leaguers. Somewhere along the line, said third baseman jumped Bonner on the totem pole and became the Orioles starting Shortstop. He would go on to win the Rookie of the Year award that year, the MVP the next year, and redefine offensive expectations for the position. Oh, yeah, and he played in 2,632 consecutive games, including a stretch where he played every inning for around 6 years. No wonder Bonner never got much of an opportunity! Unfortunately, Cal Ripken’s prowess makes it bad luck that I didn’t get this card. I’ve got a set of rack packs including a 1982 pack, maybe I’ll get really lucky there. Doubtful, so this may need be an ebay purchase.

The “500 card box” had 516 cards. As before, numbers below don’t include the wax box – overall, the vending box definitely gives me a better chance to complete the set than the wax box:

53 doubles, 1 triple

462 of the 792 card set. (58.3% set completion)

Again, pretty good collation for a vending box. Though I’ve now not gotten the Raines RC in ’81 and the Ripken RC in ’82 between both the wax and vending boxes.

Also, though, the crossover between the wax and vending boxes wasn’t bad, in fact it was terrible this time. I’m 176 cards short out of the 792 after opening both boxes. I guess with that many, there’s a good risk of not having the Ripken.

I’ll post some pictures from the box breaks later this week. Sans the Bob Bonner rookie, obviously.

1982 Topps Wax Box Break

22 09 2010


I just finished my 1982 wax box break. I also bought this box from BBXC, only this time I bought it from them at the National. I did not pull the Ripken RC, which is far and away the best card in the set. In fact, I didn’t get the Dave Stewart or the Lee Smith Rookie Cards. Kind of depressing, actually. The collation is getting worse as we go newer in the years. This box had the same number of cards, and the set actually had 66 more cards. So it should be harder to get doubles. Unfortunately, I got 30 more doubles than the 1981 box, and 80 more doubles than the 1980 box! I did get the Pete Rose and Nolan Ryan cards, and Mike Schmidt as well. I guess that’s something? The gum stains (on the rear card) are still not fixable, but most of the wax stains (on the first card) were. “Statistics” listed below:

36 packs per box * 15 cards per pack = 540 cards

113 doubles, 6 triples

421 of the 792 card set. (53.2% set completion)

24 stickers (and 12 doubles)

13 singles were ruined (so many were doubles), so I really only completed ~51% of the set from this box. Down 5% from the ’81 box. Part of that is the increase in set size, but it’s a bit frustrating to not get the Ripken! Hopefully it’s in the vending box I bought, which I’ll open later.

Pack Promotions

20 09 2010

I haven’t really mentioned much in previous posts about what pack promotions Topps had in previous years. I’m updating those previous posts with that info, but here’s a quick summary:

1980 Topps

  • You could send in for information on personalized trading cards, “just like cards in this pack”, except supposedly “with your personal data on the back”
  • For 1 Topps baseball wrapper and 50 ¢, you could send in for an uncut sheet of all the Team Checklist cards.
  • Topps also issued some “test” wrappers with the “Hit to Win” promotion that was available in every wax pack in 1981 – I would presume this was issued later in the release run
  • You could send in 1 Topps wrapper (any sport), plus $5.25 plus 75 ¢ S&H to receive a Topps Sports Card Locker that held 1300+ cards

1981 Topps

  • Every pack contained a scratch off game called Topps “Hit to Win”, where various hits would win you prizes ranging from a Wilson Jim Rice model glove to various supersize glossy photos of “top players”
  • You could again, (though for 75 ¢ now) Send in 1 Topps baseball wrapper for an uncut sheet of all the Team Checklist cards
  • For $1 and a baseball wrapper, you could receive a collecting box with 5 “easy-to carry files”
  • For $8 bucks and a wrapper, you could get a “classic stripes cap” of an MLB team of your choice

1982 Topps

  • The back of packs advertised buying an album for the insert stickers where Topps cards were sold.
  • For $2 + 60¢ S&H, you could send in for 10 “Official Topps Sports Card Collectors Sheets”; these are 9-card sheets to store your cards, similar to what Ultra-Pro has today
  • Again, for $5.75 plus 75¢ S&H and 1 Topps (any sport) wrapper, you could send for the 1982 version of the Sports Card Locker
  • You could send in for the collecting box for the same cost as the year before