Bert Blyleven 1971 Topps RC
Dave Concepcion 1971 Topps RC
Steve Garvey 1971 Topps RC
While I do appreciate some of the nicer vintage cards out there, at least right now my focus is generally on star RCs, so I was happy to grab this significant trio from '71. As you can see, they're in, shall we say, various states of disrepair? No worries, condition doesn't exactly enter the equation for these anyway. Blyleven is the only HOFer you'll see today, but the rest of these players aren't slouches. Concepcion played his 19-year career with the Reds and won titles in two of four World Series. Garvey (a rare Spartan appearance on this here blog) was an MVP and 10-time All Star for the Dodgers and Padres who won a ring with L.A. in '81. Not a bad group!
Elston Howard 1956 Topps
Howard is the only player from this group that isn't a RC, which is partially my fault. This seller stuffs his 90% off box full of vintage cards in card-savers that list the Beckett "value" and his price. Some also include notes such as "SP" or "HI" while others say "RC." Since I'm pretty ignorant when it comes to vintage I didn't realize Howard's actual RC hails from Bowman the year before. Despite that, this is a great 50s card (with a play at the plate!) of a former Yankees star, a nine-time All Star who was the 1963 A.L. MVP and won four World Series rings along with six other pennants. I'll happily place it in my vintage baseball collection!
Harvey Kuenn 1954 Bowman RC
Harvey Kuenn 1954 Topps RC
Now HERE's a Detroit Tiger for this Tigers-centric blog! I was excited to find the Topps first, then surprised to see the Bowman a bit later during my trip through the boxes, so I decided to grab both. Between the two I'd take the Topps any day as it comes from yet another classic design, and includes a great roaring Tigers logo. Kuenn spent eight seasons in Motown and was the '53 A.L. Rookie of the Year, not to mention a nine-time consecutive All-Star, but he was then famously traded to the Indians for Rocky Colavito. Harvey finished up with a solid 15-year career, and what's interesting is that his Baseball-Reference top player comparison is former teammate George Kell!
Tony LaRussa 1964 Topps RC
Yeah, this is definitely the card in the worst condition today, but I still thought it would be fun to pick up the RC of one of the game's best managers of the last 50 years. LaRussa finished his managerial career with three World Series titles in six tries, and though he's sometimes been one of the more controversial personalities in the sport, he never lacked for preparation or hard work.
Vada Pinson 1958 Topps RC
I have to admit that I knew very little about Pinson when I grabbed this, but the combination of it being a RC of a player I knew of on a great design (love that logo!), I knew I should grab it. As it turns out, Pinson did pretty well in his 18-year career, averaging 17 HR, 77 RBI, and a .286 AVG per 162 games. His top two player similarity scores are Steve Finley and Johnny Damon, so while he's not really a HOFer, he's still in pretty decent company. I'm glad to have grabbed this rookie of his and learned a bit more about him, plus I'm pretty happy with its condition.
As usual I was happy with my purchase and feel I easily got my money's worth. While I don't attend shows very often anymore, I do appreciate the opportunity to add to my baseball RC PC a few times a year, especially when it's fun vintage stuff like this.
Keep an eye out on TMM in the next couple days to see a couple more vintage pickups and the rest of my show haul!