While the company would later produce other baseball cards, the 1983 Kellogg’s set sort of marked the end of an era. Most collectors consider this Kellogg’s last ‘vintage’ issue and 1983 would be the final time the company would produce cards until 1991.
Perhaps looking to distinguish themselves a bit more from the other cards that were in the market, Kellogg’s reverted to a slimmer card last seen in 1980. Measuring 1 7/8″ x 3 1/4″, it was the thinnest set the company produced in three years. It was also the first time since 1980 that there were exactly 60 cards in the set. The 1983 Kellogg’s issue also returned to cereal boxes as collectors could find them there or participate in a mail-in offer for an entire set. This was the first time since 1980 that the cards were back inside of the company’s product.
The design resembled that of past issues, too. One significant change, however, was the removal of stars around the border of the card. Since 1974, Kellogg’s sets were formally titled ‘Kellogg’s 3D Super Stars,’ so the stars around the cards always seemed to be a slight nod to that. But in 1983, the company changed things up quite a bit by removing the stars and relying on a border consisting two rectangles instead.
The rest of the front included a color image, the popular replica signature, and Kellogg’s logo. At the bottom were the player’s last name and his position. Backs were again printed in black ink and included the usual statistical and biographical information, as well as a card number, team logo and Major League Baseball logos.
1983 Kellogg’s Stars
Since entering the baseball card market in 1970, Kellogg’s sets always have relied on star players to carry its sets. In 1983, things were no different. The release is anchored by Nolan Ryan and Pete Rose but also includes a slew of baseball legends such as Rod Carew, Reggie Jackson, George Brett, Rickey Henderson, Carl Yastrzemski, Eddie Murray, Robin Yount, Dave Winfield, Ozzie Smith, Jim Palmer, Steve Carlton, and Mike Schmidt among others. Approximately 1/3 of the entire set, in fact, is comprised of Hall of Fame players.
Despite all of the stars, Kellogg’s missed the opportunity to include a trio of rookie cards that surely would be popular today. Tony Gwynn, Wade Boggs, and Ryne Sandberg all made the 1983 sets in Topps’, Donruss’, and Fleer’s products. The trio, however, was left out of the Kellogg’s set.
One interesting error card is that of Kansas City Royals pitcher Dan Quisenberry. Quisenberry’s name was new to Kellogg’s since the 1983 card was his first in the company’s run of sets and they flubbed it, spelling it ‘Quiesenberry’. The card was uncorrected in the set so it doesn’t hold any special value, however.
1983 Kellogg’s Prices
The 1983 Kellogg’s set is extremely affordable even though it is about to turn 34 years old. Ryan and Rose are the most expensive and are still both under $5 in near mint condition. The complete set is generally available in the $15-$20 range. Since complete sets were available as a mail-in offer, collectors will sometimes be able to find these in the original packaging for an added bonus. You can see 1983 Kellogg’s singles and sets on eBay by clicking here.