Friday, June 7, 2019

Topps & Hall of Fame Project 2002-2004

My Hall of Fame collection started as a way to acquire vintage cards of Hall of Fame players. I wasn't too picky. I chose to collect Topps as they've been around the most amount of time and never missed a year since 1951. I just wanted a player's card who was in the Hall of Fame even if the team he was playing for at the time wasn't the team he proudly sports on his plaque. And then when I got to the more modern guys, I decided I'd go for their last base set card as it would show, hopefully, his complete stats. The modern cards are great because they are super reasonable (cheap) to acquire: on average I pay .18 or .25 cents per card. Sadly in fifty years they may still be worth the same amount, but that's not why I buy them.

But Topps is consistently inconsistent in sometimes giving a  player a final card the year after he retired and sometimes they pretend he didn't play a full or partial season. These cards here are a great case in point. Topps is missing Martinez's 2004 season in which he only appeared in 141 games. But they did include Gwynn's final season in which he appeared in just 71 games. Martinez was given an insert card in 2005 but that doesn't count for me.

These two cards are 2004 Edgar Martinez and 2002 Tony Gwynn.  The former was voted in by bullying, by and large, on his last year appearing on the ballot and the latter on his own merits in his first year of eligibility. I know some of you will disagree with me on Martinez. That's cool. 

I love that both players played for a single team their entire career. A rare breed of the species. 

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Love seeing Gwynn's full career stats. If he had just two more hits in 1982, he would have average .300 or higher in all 20 seasons of his career. Oh well... 19 out 20 isn't too shabby.

    1. I never knew that about Gwynn's 1982 hits. That's interesting. Thanks. I wish he had had those hits, too.

  2. Players playing their entire career for one team is great. It's awesome seeing all that red on the back of Gwynn's card. Such a great hitter.