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Showing posts from October, 2014

Six six six

Hello, Halloween fans. Tonight we explore the spookiest number to ever grace a baseball card.

The No. 666, the so-called "Mark of the Beast," is often associated with the devil. And for years, it was too scary of a number to appear on the back of a baseball card unless some player was unfortunate enough to compile exactly 666 career hits, runs, RBIs, etc.


We're all aware of the Upper Deck employee who as a Giants fan thought it would be amusing to make sure that a Dodger player received card #666. And for a few years in the early days of Upper Deck's history, that's exactly what happened. Of course, Upper Deck eventually lost its MLB license and fell out of favor with a lot of collectors, and I'll bet that it can be traced to this particular prank. You don't fool with No. 666.

In fact, Topps knew better for a number of years. Card sets rarely came close to having 600 cards in a set, let alone 700, so which player would be featured on card #666 was never …

Burying my disappointment in an avalanche of cardboard

Perhaps you've heard that 1.8 percent of major league baseball fans are happy because the Giants won the World Series again. As you can imagine, I'm part of the 98.2 percent that is not happy. In the least. I can't bring myself to say it was a great postseason or Series or any of that 'yay, baseball!' stuff because I'm too INVESTED.

Also, I'll never get used to the fact that a team that ended the season six games behind gets a World Series trophy. That's regardless of whether it's the Giants or not ... OK, it annoys me more that it's the Giants ... but, really, baseball what are you doing to yourself? I know it's irreparable and most fans have moved on and the other sports have been dealing with this for a long time since way back when I was a child, but six games behind, man. Six. Games. Behind.

Anyway, it's another lost postseason and to add to that joy I've worked 15 days straight and there's no real certainty about my next d…

Best set of the year: 1987

Today you're all focused on Game 7 of the World Series (or should be). I am, too, although part of me has turned to mush because that's what every Oct. 29th does to me.

But I try to convert this mushy holiday in which I met my girlfriend for life into something about baseball cards every year. And since that special Oct. 29 came in 1987, I figured that's the best time to feature the sets of 1987 in the Best Set Of The Year series.

In this series I arbitrarily rank the sets issued each year from 1981 forward. Since we're at 1987 now, we've stepped squarely into the junk wax era. Topps, Donruss and Fleer were all very prominent in 1987. Sportflics also issued their second set (and the first one that I ever saw). But I don't consider Sportflics a major set, so I'm excluding them.

I'm a little hesitant to rank these just because '87 sets seem much beloved by the 30-something crowd and I'm entirely too dismissive of sets from the late '80s. In 1…