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Rich’s Ramblings: Respect for Baseball Cards Reflecting Our Time

I was not planning to write any more columns this week but sometimes life takes one on an unexpected turn. This week, we had to put down my beloved Heidi, our mini-schnauzer, who was an integral part of my life from the day I met my bride-to-be.   Here’s a photo of her.

Heidi

Despite how she looked in this photo she was truly a happy dog, especially when she was talking to her dad each night just before he went to sleep.

Heidi, we’ll all miss you very much.

And while losing Heidi is significant to me, that loss is truly small potatoes compared to what Boston went through when a bomb exploded near the Boston Marathon finish line. Such a public event and so much damage and hurt to people is nothing that can ever be forgotten. And in the 2013 Topps Update card series, examples such as this card from the set which say Boston Strong were printed to a stated run of 50 cards.

David Ortiz Topps Update Boston Strong

I think these cards are now part of a historical event and are important to the hobby.

We had a series of articles about what cards should been in an Archives subset or insert set but these cards fit into the tradition of honoring important historical events. Shoot, I remember in my early Beckett days the interest garnered when whomever was supposed to be on card #737 of the 1991 Score Baseball set was replaced by this card honoring our troops involved in Desert Storm back in 1991.

Score flag card

That was an example, among many. of historical events being used on cards and frankly I think they are a really neat way of combining history and card collecting. Actually, part of me wishes in 1977 Topps had created a Rick Monday saving the American flag card as that was one of the most endearing events of the 1970’s.

While Rick Monday had a very nice career and accomplished quite a bit, if there was a card showing him saving the flag, that card would probably be among the top 10 in the 1977 set which even includes Rookie Cards of current and future Hall of Famers such as Andre Dawson, Dale Murphy and Bruce Sutter.

2013 Topps David Ortiz flagSo, I love seeing Boston Strong on the Update Topps Cards, I loved the photo of David Ortiz with the American Flag in the background and I loved thinking about the days when the country got together for Desert Storm and we all appeared to be on the same side of the argument.

Just as a note… we are no further along on the current COMC challenge then we were a week ago. Bo,y those 1997 Topps Mint cards are sure proving to be a new mystery.  The COMC History Points are still out there for the taking.

Among future COMC Card Challenges will be a Negro League set and 1994 Collector Choice variations. We look forward to trying to solve the hobby mysteries.

Rich Klein can be reached at [email protected]

About Rich Klein

Rich Klein has spent almost his entire life collecting baseball cards having begun at the tender age of seven. He has spent more than three decades in the organized hobby including editing the first 12 editions of the Beckett Almanac of Baseball Card and Collectibles. He lives in Plano, TX along with his wife Dena and their two dogs. You can reach him at [email protected].

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