Tuesday, July 28, 2020

The 1980 Donruss Set That Never Was - The Requests

Sorry for the delay.  I'd like to be a better and more consistent blogger.  But as I've said before, life gets in the way. Truly not that many requests this time around, anyway.  So I'd like to begin with a request of my own:

Ed Farmer was the radio voice of the White Sox from 1991-2019.  He also pitched for the South-siders from 1979-1981. He made his only All Star appearance in 1980, so he fit this theme perfectly. Farmer passed away April 1st.  The White Sox organization made a nice video tribute to "Farmio".

Additionally, the Sox will be sporting a "Farmio" patch on their sleeve this season. This one is modeled by Palehose newcomer Edwin Encarnacion. 

 After Yoan Moncada's three run homer in the opener, Andy Masur (Farmer's successor in the booth) also paid tribute echoing Farmer's signature call:

"Hey Ed, this one's for you! Turn on the fireworks! It's a tie ballgame! Light it up!"


Okay, now for the actual requests. "Night Owl" suggested a 1980 rookie and a couple pre-rookies. Rickey Henderson, who made his Topps debut in 1980, got a "Rated Rookie" card.

For the pre-rookies, Tim Raines and Fernando Valenzuela, I made a "Rated Prospects" card featuring them in Minor League uniforms.  I went with black and white photos similar to the 1979 Topps Prospects cards. (To be honest, if I could have found color photos, I would have used them.)

I liked the concept, but the final product seemed lacking, so I also made "Rated Rookie" cards for Rock and Fernando.They would both debut on Topps and Donruss in 1981.  Valenzuela also appeared in the 1981 Fleer set while Raines had a card in the Donruss set.

A couple more requests were Ron Cey and Mark Fidrych. Fidrych was in the final MLB season of his meteoric career.  After his brilliant rookie season in 1976, he injured his knee then tore his rotator cuff. He never regained his early dominance. In 1980 Ron Cey was coming off of his 6th straight All Star season. I had to include at least one night-game card for Night Owl.

The usual call for more post season cards came up as well. So I made Champion Series recap-cards and a Game 4 card. The Orioles were up three games to one, forcing the Pirates to win three straight.

Finally, Bryan wanted more Pirates and Indians. So here is a Dave Parker All-Star card and a Len Barker card. Barker led the AL in strikeouts in 1980 and 1981. He made his only All Star appearance in 1981 after throwing a perfect game that May.