Sunday, December 13, 2015

Cards that make my blood boil

You ever look at certain cards in your collection and get enraged every time you view them?

I do.

You may be wondering about my blood pressure. I'm happy to say it's perfectly normal. But there are certain cards that I'd never look at in the doctor's waiting room.

I'll give you just one example.

It's the 1976 Topps Jim Wynn card.

If you collected in the 1970s -- if you're familiar with the 1970s at all -- you know that Wynn was not an all-star caliber player with the Braves. By the time the Dodgers traded him to Atlanta, in the deal that land L.A. Dusty Baker, Wynn's skills had all but eroded. He hit a pathetic .207 for the Braves in 1976, and Atlanta quickly sold him to the Yankees, where he performed even worse. Wynn was a very old 35 when he retired.

But in 1975, Wynn was still at the top of his game. He had won N.L. Comeback of the Year honors for his performance with the Dodgers in 1974. He made his second straight start in the All-Star Game in 1975, and he hit back-to-back home runs with teammate Steve Garvey to lead the N.L to victory in that game.

There was plenty of Dodger excellence for Wynn in 1975, but when the 1976 Topps cards came out, collectors pulled this airbrushed disaster of a depressed-looking Wynn in a faux Braves cap and a Dodgers uniform, proclaiming -- falsely -- that Wynn was an All-Star with the Braves.

THIS is Wynn rounding the bases after hitting his All-Star home run in 1975 while wearing a Dodger uniform.

Somebody take my blood pressure now.

I mean, what was the rush? Looking back on it, Wynn's time with the Braves was hardly memorable, and if people remember the Toy Cannon these days, it's for his time with the Astros or the Dodgers. Topps' decision looks all the more hasty now.

Yes, Wynn spent but two years with the Dodgers -- doing very well, mind you -- but thanks to that terrible '76 Topps card, there are precious few cards of Wynn as a Dodger.

This is Wynn's Only Topps Dodger Card In A Dodger Uniform. I've shown it so many times on this blog because it's Wynn's Only Topps Dodger Card In A Dodger Uniform.

Sure, you can go back to the 1974 Topps set ...

... and get a card of Wynn listed as a Dodger but dressed in an Astros uniform.

But that's about it.

We Dodger fans have been so desperate for Wynn cards as a Dodger that we've been forced to scramble for scraps of Wynn Dodger goodness.

Look! There's Wynn greeting Joe Ferguson on the '75 Topps World Series subset!

These were the crumbs that Topps was throwing us.

Meanwhile, a glorious image of Wynn as a Dodger like this was playing on your television set in 1975.

Somebody take my blood pressure NOW!

Fortunately, as I grew in my collecting knowledge, and the years passed enough that even card makers grew nostalgic, a handful of other Wynn As A Dodger cards have entered my collection.

Hostess had the good sense to package Wynn with its spongey cakes in 1975. The company knew Dodger greatness when it saw it.

Also, SSPC knew that Wynn rightfully should be shown as a Dodger in its 1976 set. It saved news of the trade for the back of the card. Yes, James Sherman Wynn was a member of the Atlanta Braves. But SSPC wasn't about to get into that airbrushing funny business.

Thanks goodness.

And thank goodness for nostalgic sets like Fleer Sports Illustrated, so we can appreciate Wynn at the height of his Dodger powers, propelling L.A. to the World Series in 1974.

Bloggers are doing their part, too. Why just the other day, the blog When Topps Had (Base) Balls, created the '76 Topps card of Wynn that should have been created. I need that thing in actual cardboard form.

There still aren't enough cards of Jimmy Wynn as a Dodger, but at least these few cards, along with Dodger-specific sets like the Smokey the Bear and Target sets, take some of the sting away from this horrifying thing:


I need a nurse, STAT.


P.S.: This may or may not be a new series. What often happens with blog series is I start one off very enthusiastically -- with enthusiastic comments from readers -- and then I write a second post in the series and the reaction is minimal. I have enough blog series that are semi-thriving, so I may just stick to those.


  1. Glad to see you have as much animosity towards the Braves as I do for the Dodgers. But I think we can both agree LOL DIAMONDBACKS

  2. I'm sure that with the printing advancements of today,someone can whip you up a kick ass Wynn card. Maybe even chrome It out,too ;)

  3. we think alike about that card:

    i was also excited to see wynn show up on steve garvey's 2009 topps triple threads card:

    finally, if you were to do a second one of these posts, might i suggest the 1985 topps keith hernandez all-star card because it should have been a steve garvey card (same goes for 1986), or perhaps the 1972 topps tom haller card (because it puts his in action card in team limbo).

  4. If that makes your blood boil what does a card like this do?

  5. I remember the days of the Toy Cannon!