Tuesday, September 29, 2020

1973 Alt-Topps Requests

 We've had a few distractions during this thread. Some were good, Alec Mills surprise no-no. Most were not, the passing of Tom Seaver, Lou Brock and Gale Sayers.  So finally, here are the requests:

 Just a few requests this time. "Rumple" wanted to see Willie Mays and Ken Boswell of the Mets.  I used the All Star Format for the aging "Say Hey Kid". It was his last All-Star start.  He was the replacement starter for Roberto Clemente. Clemente had just come back from 2 weeks off with an injury then played a 12 inning game against Cincy just before the All Star break.  Danny Murtaugh, both the Pirates manager and the All Star manager, gave him the night off to rest.  Sadly, that would have been Roberto's last All Star game, too.

"Bob" wanted to see if a longer team name would work in the horizontal format.  So I made a multiplayer card. These were more prevalent in the 60s but this pose looked like it was made for one of those cards.  The team name is compressed but I think it still works.

Since there are always requests for post-season cards, I couldn't pass up using these two great pictures from the 1972 Pennant Series.  The reaction of Dick Williams and Mike Hegan in the background as Tenace crosses the plate is priceless. The A's scored the winning run on an errant throw in the 11th inning to beat the Tigers in game 1 by a score of 3-2.  

Although Clemente took out Darrel Chaney in what would possibly be an illegal move today, The Pirates went down quietly 7-1 to the Reds in game 4 of the NLCS.

Another note on this post. It wasn't showing up on other blog lists. So I had to delete and re-post it.  Has anyone else encountered this with the new blogger format?

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Gale Sayers


2020 can't end soon enough for me. Seems like bad news everyday.  Today a personal hero and Bears great , Gale Sayers passed away.  Looks like I'll be re-watching "Brian's Song" tonight.  One of the few movies that it is acceptable to see a grown-ass man cry.

His career was cut short by injuries, and he was pretty well represented on cardboard due to his super-stardom.  He even had a 1972 card despite retiring that September.  So I had to settle for this odd ball 1971 Kelloggs 3D Card That Never Was.  

I had made one other card of the Kansas Comet. That was his Rookie of the Year card from the 1965 Philadelphia set:


For those of you that caught it, I removed my previous post from today and posted this instead.  I will repost the requests from the 1973 Alt Topps set in a few days.

Monday, September 14, 2020

Alec Mills No-Hits the Brewers

2020 has seen two no-hitters and both were tossed by Chicago pitchers.  Alec Mills pitched the 16th no-no in franchise history.  Not surprisingly, Mills did not even have a card in any major set this season.  His only card is in the latest wave of 2020 Topps Total.  So here is a 2020 Heritage to commemorate the occasion. 

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Even More 1973 Alt-Topps

All Stars, Leaders, World Series and Team Cards

It's unfortunate that I had to break from this series of posts.  I paused to pay tribute (in my own unusual way) to two superstar players who coincidentally, were in their prime in 1973, Tom Seaver and Lou Brock. 

Getting back to my Alt-Topps 1973 set, once again, I decided to take another unused Topps prototype for a subset. I chose the Hammer and Rod Carew to represent the 1973 Alt-Topps All Star set.

I saw this oddball mash-up among the group of Topps rejects. It's Pete Ward in the same pose as his 1964 Topps Stand-Up card.  But the team is the Orioles and the name on the card is Vida Blue.  There would be no way I could possibly make this card design into an entire set.  But it was simply way too cool not to use, so instead I used it as my 1973 All Star insert card design.

For my leader cards I went traditional(ish) in the design, but I took some liberties by including leaders in slugging percentage. I like the idea of non-traditional stats being used for leader cards.  That might be an upcoming post....

For the World Series I used traditional Red-White-Blue color scheme. This shot of the Series MVP Gene Tenace scoring the winning run in front of a dejected Johnny Bench is a classic.

The team cards are about a 50/50 ratio design to team photo.  Other than that they are fairly traditional team cards.

I chose the Royals and Expos just because I hadn't made any cards of them yet.  I don't want anyone to feel left out.


Just as I've done in previous Alt-Topps posts, I'll make as many request as I can. Hopefully, I'll post them in a few weeks. Just post your requests (or even ideas for other subsets, etc) in the comment section.  Thanks.

Monday, September 7, 2020

Lou Brock


Depending on whether you were from St. Louis or Chicago, Lou Brock is remembered as the greatest trade of all time or the worst.  But he was honored and respected universally. He passed away yesterday at the age of 81. The same season that Hank Aaron set the all time homerun record, Brock set the single season stolen base record.  That was the year I really began collecting and these were my favorite (non-hometown) players.

I'm in the midst of creating an Alt-Topps series for 1973 and this card fits in nicely.  I've also created a number of cards featuring Lou Brock over the years.  Many were stolen base leader cards which Topps didn't include until 1973.  Here they are again:

Saturday, September 5, 2020

1984 Donruss Tom Seaver

While putting together all of my Tom Seaver creations, I was disappointed that none showed him on my favorite team.  He played on the White Sox from 1984-86.  Topps and Fleer both had Traded/Update series in 1984.  Donruss was a little slower to that game.  Seaver was still in a Mets uni in the Donruss set.  So here is the update that Donruss never had.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

Tom Terrific


Ok, it's official. 2020 sucks.  Yesterday the baseball world lost a legend.  Tom Seaver was the ultimate opening day starter. He started in 16 opening days on the Mets, Reds and White Sox.

Since this is Cards That Never Were, I figured I'd post the greatest Tom Seaver Card That Never Was on the top of this post.  This wasn't made by me, it was a card that actually made it onto the 1968 Topps proof sheet before someone at Topps caught the sophomore pitcher's prank.  He was posing as a lefty, and he wasn't the only one.  Bob Gibson pulled the same prank on the same proof sheet.  If you look closely at the proof sheet, Seaver is second from the left in second row.  Gibson is fourth row, five from right.

Of course, I've made my share of Tom Seaver cards, too.  I even attempted to replicate his 1968 prank in my 1968 Alt-Topps series. I used a little photo manipulation to make the righty a lefty.
Here are the rest of my Tom Seaver Cards That Never Were in no particular order:

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

More 1973 Alt-Topps

Traded, Rookies and Managers

Filling out the set, here are some rookie cards, traded cards and manager/coaches cards.

On November 27, 1972 the Mets dealt Tommie Agee to the Astros for two minor leaguers.  The Mets GM didn't sugar-coat it, telling the press, "We were dissatisfied with Agee's playing."  Agee looks a little dissatisfied himself.  One day later, Frank Robinson was involved in a seven-player deal that sent him 30 miles Southeast from Chavez Ravine to the big "A" in Aneheim. 

The 1973 NL Rookie of the Year was Gary Matthews Sr. He batted an even .300 and had 58 RBIs.  A couple other notable debuts in 1973 were made by Dave Winfield and Dave Parker.  With the benefit of 20-20 hindsight, I included them on this card.

In the AL it was Al Bumbry or as Topps called him on his rookie card, "Alonza".  I also included Jerry Hairston whose father, brother and two sons also played in the MLB. Rounding out the trio is Gorman Thomas who was a first round pick of the Seattle Pilots but didn't make the majors until 1973.

In the early years (through 1956) Topps included both managers and coaches in the regular set.  There have been a few exceptions since, notably Yogi Berra listed as catcher/coach in 1965 and the Cubs failed experiment with the "College of Coaches" in the early 1960s. Bob Kennedy was listed as "Head Coach" of the Cubs in 1964 & 1965. With a wealth of MLB retired stars coaching, I wouldn't mind seeing cards of them included.


Just as I've done in previous Alt-Topps posts, I'll make as many request as I can. Hopefully, I'll post them in a few weeks. Just post your requests (or even ideas for other subsets, etc) in the comment section.  Thanks.