Monday, October 17, 2016

A Shoebox of Baseball Cards: Introduction & the Atlanta Braves

Last week a friend gave me a shoebox overflowing with baseball cards (some football, basketball and hockey, girly cards: hit here for those...). I sorted through them over the weekend when I was generally making a nuisance of myself in my wife's presence or outside playing in the yard. This is the first post that will look at the cards in the box. If there are any that are of interest to any of you out there, contact me. I'm going to basically run through these sequentially and post every day or two. But, to mix it up, I'll chuck in a Darryl Strawberry post, too, because I know you love that the most.

Baseball cards & Bailey's: A Match made in heaven

Cards sorted...

As he and I are both archivists, I thought I'd start this post in the vernacular and spirit of the traditional archival finding aids.

Creator(s): Bowman, Donruss, Fleer, Pinnacle, Score, Topps, Upper Deck

Title: Johnson/Steinberg Card Collection

Dates: 1982-1996 (bulk 1991-1994)

Physical Description: 1 wonky shoe box

Scope and Content: The Johnson/Steinberg Card Collection, 1982-1996 (bulk 1990-1994), show baseball in a state many would no longer recognize. Representing long retired players, demolished stadiums, and defunct teams, these baseball cards record baseball history at the height of production and at a crossroads in the collecting field. Included in these monumental moments are the expansion teams Colorado Rockies and Florida Marlins and the strike-shortened season of 1994 which makes some interesting reading on the 1995 card backs.

Condition Note: Many cards are in very good condition; however, some are in crap shape, #tbh. Like, for example, the only Darryl Strawberry has a tear in it. Thanks, d*ck. j/k, ha ha. Many cards contain forged signatures by the young owner, then a child, and makes for some laughable moments. Highlights will be included in the blog posts. Some cards have more wrinkles than Jim Leyland.

Organization: By team. Then by year, by maker, and then by card number

Restrictions on Access: None

Container list: The Atlanta Braves (1987-1995)

1987 Topps: Ken Oberkfell
1988 Topps: Andres Thomas, Charles Puleo, Dion James, Jeff Dedmon, Joe Boever
1989 Score: Derek Lilliquist
1990 Donruss: Andres Thomas, Derek Lilliquist, Jose Alvarez
1990 Fleer: Darrell Evans, Dale Murphy, Pete Smith
1991 Donruss: Jim Presley, Kent Mercker, Charlie Puleo
1991 Score: Jim Vatcher, Ron Gant (2), Tony Castillo (2), Andres Thomas
1991 Topps: Tony Castillo, Paul Marak
1991 Upper Deck: Jeff Treadway
1992 Donruss: Brian Hunter
1992 Donruss Triple Play: Lonnie Smith
1992 Score: Charlie Liebrandt, Sid Bream, Brian Hunter
1992 Topps: Tommy Gregg, Jim Clancy, Mike Heath, Armando Reynoso, Mark Wohlers
1992 Topps Stadium Club: Jeff Treadway, Rafael Belliard
1992 Upper Deck: Charlie Liebrandt, Otis Nixon
1993 Score Select: Ron Gant
1994 Donruss: Greg Olson, Mike Stanton TRADED
1994 Fleer Ultra: Terrell Wade
1994 Score: Rafael Belliard
1994 Upper Deck: Terrell Wade
1994 Upper Deck Collector's Choice: Greg McMichael
1995 Fleer: Mark Wohlers
1995 Upper Deck: Jose Oliva

Not a great photo, but the Braves...

The interesting thing about these cards, for me, is that they largely pick up in 1991 where I dropped off after the 1990 collecting season. So in some ways there is a continuation of where I was as a 16 year old. (Though I'm more bald than I was then, and certainly less mature.) Sorting the cards, I learned so many different card designs which lends to the history of and adds perspective to the industry. And seeing all the players that were on some teams pre-1990 in different uniforms year after year was bizarre. For example, Vince Coleman will always be a St. Louis Cardinals player to me, not a New York Mets or Kansas City Royals member, as he is in these cards.

1995 Fleer can suck it. Worst freakin' card design of all time. On the other hand, 1992 Topps I completely love, especially those card backs that show the home stadium of the player depicted. I found this truly wonderful. The other thing I learned, which I think I knew anyway, is that the kiss of death for a player, more than likely, is being touted as a "Future Stars" or a "Rated Rookie". I guess a good baseball batting average is .275 and above. I'm not a betting many, but I'm betting Topps, Donruss, et. al. are batting closer to the Mendoza line on their ability to forecast who's going to be a star. #hensleymeulens.

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Yum, Bailey's, indeed. Thank you for your comment Capt!

  2. I worry about something labeled as "Irish Cream"

  3. Did you get my email that I am interested in the Indians you listed in a previous email?

    1. Hi Tim. Yes, I emailed you back Monday. Must be having some email problems...anyway, will send you Indians cards by the weekend! Thank you for taking them.