Some cards arrived at the house recently from blog reader and frequent commenter Stubby, who provides a needed and often insightful perspective on various card topics, but especially cards from the '60s, because I'm not Don Draper, man.
The cards fell into two distinct categories and they're so different that I must break them up into separate posts. I will start with the totally unexpected cards first. Yes, the Dodgers cards were the unexpected ones.
Stubby went traveling through my want lists, which is the only way to fly. And he found stuff that would've taken me years to reach on that perpetual priority list in my head.
For example, Panini products, both up there, and down here.
You all know my stance on Panini, but I'll suspend the criticism just this one time to mention that the Roy Campanella Elite Giants card is pretty awesome. A larger photo would have been nice (the design, Panini, the design), but I'm happy to have that card.
Another nice photo, of a Dodger great from the Roaring '20s. Not crazy about the Golden Age design again, but good subject matter in this set.
My favorite Panini set, which, of course, they discontinued. Because, Panini, oh, Panini ...
Fortunately, the unlicensed cards ventured into quirkier and much more pleasing fare with a couple of Mike Piazza cards:
These are both genericly awesome and excellent incentive to load up on sausage and processed cheese.
Another good area for tracking down Dodgers I'll never get around to acquiring, is mid-1990s Upper Deck minors issues.
Maybe it's just me, but I don't want to revisit prospects who never clicked with my favorite team. Sorry to lump you in with all those other guys, Future Stock Konerko, but you didn't do much for the Dodgers either.
Speaking of prospects, here are some more recent ones with slightly better results. I'm not exactly missing Matt Kemp right now, but it's good to know that he can still come back to the Dodgers in cardboard form.
Those Total cards were only a small sampling of the completist sets that Stubby sent along.
First, there's more Total cards from a variety of years with a host of players who made a small-to-nonexistent impact on the Dodgers, But TOTAL DOES NOT DISCRIMINATE.
Another completist set, 1998 Pacific Online. With these four Dodgers can you believe I'm only 10 cards away from finishing the team set? The number of players for each team in this set is sheer, welcome madness.
I've always liked Pacific Online's backs -- much more than the fronts -- I call 'em rainbow in Mexico.
More Pacific. I didn't know anyone collected 1995 Pacific. If a set is released and nobody buys it does it exist? That was 1995 Pacific for me. I almost never saw it -- until this package arrived and there were 11 cards of it that I needed.
The much more familiar 1994 Pacific and three notables crossed off the list. King me.
There were a few more Pacific cards from assorted years, but we're not done yet.
There's a scanner-unfriendly '95 Score Gold Rush card.
And an equally scanner-unfriendly '94 Sportflics card.
And there were two more items that I have yet to crack out of their cases:
The exclusivity means zip now that etopps is no more, but that doesn't mean I can't be giddy, and I would have squealed my way through the day if I landed these about seven years ago.
I still enjoy the fact that there are only 751 and 880 of these respectively. I'm not a hardline 1/1 collector.
I will be cracking these at some point, like I did with my first etopps not long ago.
Stubby also sent one of his own creations, which pays tribute to war-time Brooklyn Dodgers who never found their way to a card.
Ray Hathaway played in only four games in 1945 and died just a couple of months ago.
The backs are cool. I don't know how anyone has time to do all this, but it will reside next to my Charlie Osgood Stubbly Bubbly cards.
Even with all of this wide variety and difficult-to-find Dodger goodness, these cards were not the best part of the package.
The best part was ...
Well, you're going to have to wait.