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Scratching the itch ... or not

Nick from Dime Boxes sent me some cards a few days ago. He always seems to have one of those Topps Scratch-Offs to throw into the pile.

I like these oddballs, particularly since I'm starting to collect the 1970 Topps set (EDIT: This is a '71 Scratch-Off). And when you open one up and find this ...

... it's a bonus.

Yes, I'm one of those finicky collectors who likes my cards unscratched. You take what you can get when it comes to scratch-offs, because the urge is STRONG and also because many scratch-offs appeared back in the vintage days (think the 1964 Topps cartoons) when absolutely no one on the planet could resist scratching.

So I like that my 1970 1971 Tony Perez scratch-off is unscratched.

I also like this:

These are 48 scratch-offs from the 1981 Topps Scratch-Off set (or multiplied by three it is 144 scratch-offs). Nick came into a surplus of these and I happily volunteered to take them. I've never seen so many of the '81 Scratch-Offs in one place -- and unscratched.

I didn't find a store that sold these back in '81. Granted, my head was swimming that year, what with Topps, Donruss and Fleer to chase down and then Topps throwing 5-by-7s at us and stickers at us. It's entirely possible I simply missed the scratch-offs.

But I like these mostly because all of them feature the players that I grew up watching. I want as many card items that feature the players I saw as a kid as possible. Add these to the list.

The scratch-offs, as you know, are colorized by league: American League players have a reddish-orange background and National League players have a greenish-yellow background. You can separate the three-player card so each play has his own card and that's what I've done with the Dodgers that I have collected previously (there are also color border variations for each player but I try not to think about that too much).

Since the Dodgers are taken care of, I thought it would be nice to leave all of these intact. They look quite cool that way.

But I wanted to scratch at least one of the cards -- because, yes, even for me the itch is very strong.

But I wanted to make sure that I scratched off a card that is dupe, meaning all three players on the one card appear together on another card.

Well, sneaky Topps, none of the 48 cards here are repeats. Oh, sure, there are repeat players.

Fred Lynn is here with Mariners Tom Paciorek and Dan Meyer.

Then Fred Lynn and Tom Paciorek return on this card, but Ken Landreaux replaces Meyer.

Now Fred Lynn is back on top and Landreaux is back on the bottom but Dave Revering has replaced Paciorek.

And so it is with every other three-player scratch-off. There is no card where all three players repeat. If I want to scratch off a dupe, I will need to separate at least one card into threes.

But I don't want to do that. My OCD is at odds with my urges. They're at a stand-off and that's the way they will stay until someone breaks down.

While they get into that staring contest, let's see what else Nick sent me.

Starting with a Nebulous 9 need. The 2018 Topps Archives Dodgers team set is complete! What a bugger this card was. Two of the guys aren't even on the team anymore.

More tasty stuff from this year. I'm hoping these cards will give me the kick I need to update some 2019 want lists. There are so many tumbleweeds blowing through my lists. We'll see.

We return to some oddballs. These are TCMAs. The Gas House Gang cards are from 1974, among the earliest of the TCMA sets, which is very cool. And what strangely shaped cards.

There is so much stuff out there that I never think to collect. Mother's Cookies generally don't interest me much, particularly an Oakland A. But then you remember that Gene Tenace was a guy you collected as a kid and, yes, this belongs in the collection.

Nick is always good for some '70s Hostess cards. In fact, outside of card shows and maybe COMC, Nick is my No. 1 Hostess supplier. Seems like he's one of the few bloggers who collects them. These are from 1978 and '79. I especially like the Concepcion card because I can watch Shea Stadium slide into Flushing Bay.

Nick is always good for a Kellogg's card I don't have, too.

He also sent some recent night cards. I will see if they are worthy of making the night card binder, although whoever is in Anthony Rendon's spot will get booted.

My goodness, why haven't people been talking about this card since Stadium Club first came out?

Here are a few other random Dodger needs. You will be happy to know that the Kemp Pinnacle card is a variation of one I have already. Andrew McCutchen is on the back of this card. On the card I have McCutchen is on the front and Kemp on the back. Isn't that fun? No? It's stupid? Yeah, I think so, too. But they'll both be in the binders.

So, after all that, have I finally decided to scratch-off one of these and play the stupid game?

Nope, not yet. I saw this delightful Scratch-Off with just Dodgers on it (the only one Nick sent me that featured just one team) and I couldn't bear to scratch any of them.

But there are the rules if I ever want to throw caution to the wind.

(P.S.: I really wanted that ball-strike indicator as a kid).


  1. Glad you liked everything! My Dodger supply is kinda low at the moment, so I'm happy you liked the other oddities and randoms I included.

    I actually don't think I've seen one of those '81 Scratch-offs scratched before. Almost all my '70 Scratch-offs are scratched though. I noticed the all-Dodger panel as well -- made sure not to separate that one since I knew I had to send it to you!

  2. I ranked the Rendon in my top 10 favorite cards from this year's Stadium Club. It could potentially be in the running for card of the year, though Vlad Sr's Stadium Club card is a gem.

  3. There's some really cool stuff here. Hard to tell, but does Greg Luzinski have a mustache on that Hostess card?

  4. The Tony Perez is a 1971 Topps card with the red interior background. 1970 has a white interior background.

    1. Ah, I always forget that '71 had scratch-offs, too.

  5. Man those 1981 Scratch Offs are so cool. I'm one of those completist guys... so I'd want to own all 144 different panels. If I ever stumbled across an affordable set on eBay, I'd grab it. If and when I do... I won't be scratching anything off. Like you... my OCD just wouldn't allow it.


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