Skip to main content

Fitting in

I received these three "Vintage Legends" cards recently in a couple of trades:


The Campy card came from Marie at A Cardboard Problem, and the Robinson and Reese cards are from Brian at Play at the Plate. I don't have too much to say about them. I already expressed my views on the Robinson card.

The Vintage Legends cards are semi-annoying/semi-fun. Depending on your viewpoint, I guess. Topps is a little too giddy about playing the "what if ..." game lately, and I think it's time to stop now. But I can't get too cranky about these.

Instead, just to amuse myself, I wondered how well these cards would fit in with the sets that they resemble. Robinson is pictured on the 1976 Topps design, Campanella on the 1979 design, and Reese on the 1993  design. How would they look (or "stack up" as the back of these cards say) with other "real" 1976, 1979 and 1993 cards.

Let's get a looky:


Here is the Robinson card with eight cards in the 1976 set. Note the pitcher's logo Robinson features even though he never pitched. The Robinson card also displays the Topps logo, which '76 Topps did not do.

What interests me is the color scheme used for the Robinson card and the other Vintage Legends Dodgers. Robinson's name bar at the bottom is yellow and the team bar is pink. You'll note that the '76 Dodgers did not use yellow and pink. Bill Buckner's card is blue and red. However, Tom Hilgendorf of the Phillies is yellow and pink. Topps used yellow and pink for the Phillies in 1976 as well as a couple of other teams. But not the Dodgers.


Here is a sheet of 1979s, with Campy peaking out in the middle left. Again, the color scheme is off for the Dodgers. Doug Rau, at center, shows that the 1979 Dodgers cards featured a pink bar, not purple. Campanella's purple bar was used in '79 by the Phillies, as you see by the Tug McGraw card.


Same deal with the "1993" Pee Wee Reese, sitting in the upper right corner. Down in the lower left corner is an actual 1993 Dodger card, Tom Goodwin. The Dodgers' color scheme in 1993 was blue and red. But Pee Wee is featuring red and brown. If you look below the Reese card, you'll see the Cardinals' Ray Lankford, displaying red and brown. So Topps used Cardinals colors for the Reese card.

My question is why did Topps use different color schemes than what was used in the original sets?

My only answer doesn't hold up. I thought it might be so collectors wouldn't confuse the Vintage Legends cards with actual cards from the sets they represent.

I remember when Topps' Fan Favorites set came out. The 2004 Fan Favorites Johnny Bench card looked like this:


I was looking on ebay one time and I saw that card displayed. But the ebay seller was claiming it was the 1976 Topps Johnny Bench card.

Any fan of 1970s cards knows the real '76 Bench card looks like this:


Now, it certainly isn't the first or only example of an ebay seller attempting to deceive someone. But I can't help but think: what fool wouldn't notice the "All-Time Fan Favorites" stamp on the 2004 card?

Perhaps, changing the color scheme of the Vintage Legends cards was Topps' way of saying, "These aren't real 1976, 1979, 1993 cards!"

I don't think that's the reason though, because I don't think that's enough to differentiate those cards from the actual 76-79-93 cards. I mean, there was probably some dip who ended up buying that Bench Fan Favorites card because they thought it was the real 1976 card, foil stamp or not.

And then there are all those Vintage Legends cards in which the set didn't have a particular color scheme for each team (2001 Topps, for example).

So, I have no idea why the color schemes are different for the Vintage Legends cards.

Is it so Topps can get some fool blogger to babble about it for 700 words? Maybe so.

Comments

Orioles Magic said…
What a great breakdown about these cards. You always take it farther than I do, and it make for a great perspective on everything.
Matt Runyon said…
bleearrrrgh! I wish Topps would cut it out.
I'm glad cards made it ok and I like the comparison. Nice job as usual.

Popular posts from this blog

This guy was everywhere

It's interesting how athletes from the past are remembered and whether they remain in the public conscious or not.

Hall of Fame players usually survive in baseball conversations long after they've played because they've been immortalized in Cooperstown. Then there are players who didn't reach the Hall but were still very good and somehow, some way, are still remembered.

Players like Dick Allen, Rusty Staub, Vida Blue and Mickey Rivers live on decades later as younger generations pick up on their legacies. Then there are all-stars like Bert Campaneris, who almost never get discussed anymore.

There is just one memory of Campaneris that younger fans most assuredly know. I don't even need to mention it. You know what's coming, even if Lerrin LaGrow didn't.

But there was much more to Campaneris than one momentary loss of reason.

A couple of months ago, when watching old baseball games on youtube hadn't gotten old yet, I was watching a World Series game from…

Some of you have wandered into a giveaway

Thanks to all who voted in the comments for their favorite 1970s Topps card of Bert Campaneris.

I didn't know how this little project would go, since I wasn't installing a poll and, let's face it, the whole theme of the post is how Campaneris these days doesn't get the respect he once did. (Also, I was stunned by the amount of folks who never heard about the bat-throwing moment. Where am I hanging out that I see that mentioned at least every other month?)

A surprising 31 people voted for their favorite Campy and the one with the most votes was the one I saw first, the '75 Topps Campy card above.

The voting totals:

'75 Campy - 11 votes
'70 Campy - 4
'72 Campy - 4
'73 Campy - 4
'76 Campy - 4
'74 Campy - 3
'78 Campy - 1

My thanks to the readers who indulged me with their votes, or even if they didn't vote, their comments on that post. To show my appreciation -- for reading, for commenting, for joining in my card talk even if it might …

Return of the king

(If you haven't voted for your favorite Bert Campaneris '70s card in the last post, I invite you to do so).

So you've been away for a few years and want everyone to know that you're back.

How do you do that?

Do what The Diamond King did when he returned to card blogging last month: Bombard readers with contests and giveaways! Well, you've certainly gotten MY attention, sir!

I'll start with the giveaways first. Since he returned, the Diamond King has issued multiple "Diamond King 9" giveaways, straight out of the chute and rapid fire in the last month-plus. As I've said before, I am very slow to get to these "first come, first serve" giveaways. I used to think "I spend too much time on the computer" and now I realize "I don't spend enough time on the computer at all!"

But I was able to nab two cards out of the many giveaways.


I won this key 1981 Fleer Star Sticker of The Hawk. I have since acquired several more &#…