What if Robert Laughlin made his 300/400/500 set today?

Baseball artist and prolific direct-to-collector publisher Robert Laughlin printed a set honoring three of the sport’s “big numbers” (300 wins/.400 average/500 homers) in 1980. If you know Laughlin’s other self-made and Fleer-published sets, its cartoonish take on legendary players fits his style. The significance of those 300/400/500 achievements also means Laughlin’s set contains just one … Continue reading “What if Robert Laughlin made his 300/400/500 set today?”

Laughlin to Keep from Crying

There’s been a bit of a debate on the SABR Baseball Cards Facebook page the past few days on the merits of “fake” cards, DIY imaginary cards that people love, or hate, or are confused by. (I weighed in on this earlier in the month). Andrew Aronstein, son of TCMA founder Mike, posited a pretty … Continue reading “Laughlin to Keep from Crying”

DiMaggio’s really long streak

I ended my previous post with the teaser that neither the 1961 Topps “Baseball Thrills” subset nor its 2010 reboot, much less its 1959 precursor, included what I had grown up understanding to be the most incredible baseball feat of them all. Rather than imagine the Topps intern assigned to building the checklist simply whiffed … Continue reading “DiMaggio’s really long streak”

Hitting through the Unglaub Arc

Forty-five years after purchasing a pack, I finally completed the 1974 Fleer “Baseball’s Wildest Days and Plays” set.  This is one of several sets in which artist Robert Laughlin used cartoons to illustrate some aspect of baseball history. This set is often listed as having been issued in 1973-which is printed on the backs as … Continue reading “Hitting through the Unglaub Arc”

The Firsts Shall Be Last (Or, At Least, Most Recent)

Interesting that Jason, our Committee co-chair, should highlight this card in his recent post of cards on cards. Interesting, because the post hit right as I was acquiring two lots to get close to finishing the set. It’s the 1974 Fleer Baseball Firsts set, a 42-card issue of R. G. Laughlin’s great work. I’ve written … Continue reading “The Firsts Shall Be Last (Or, At Least, Most Recent)”

Cards of Cards of Cards

As a kid few things sucked more than being dragged to Kmart by my mom. All that changed one day in 1982 when I saw these on the shelves by checkout. I don’t recall the price, but it was damn low for a set that included Mantle, Mays, and Aaron, and it was even low … Continue reading “Cards of Cards of Cards”

Don’t think Trice, it’s alright (Part Two)

Author’s note: A previous post here examined the largely dismissive portrayal of the Negro Leagues by Topps in the early 1950s. This sequel simply expands the focus to other card makers of the era. 1949 Leaf For hobbyists who regard the Leaf issue as 1948 or 1948-1949, this set would unequivocally be the first major … Continue reading “Don’t think Trice, it’s alright (Part Two)”

Touring the Minors

For the last year, I’ve been trying to organize my card collection after a quarter century of neglect. I started with the outlying stuff – non-sports cards, hockey cards, misc., then worked through basketball and football to the big prize. It was fun to go through the cards of my youth (first set, 1958 Topps) … Continue reading “Touring the Minors”

Prehistory of the Record Breakers

Introduction One of my favorite posts on the SABR Baseball Cards blog is Matthew Prigge‘s “Like a Broken Record” (March 2017), in which he detailed the progression of the Topps Highlights and Record Breaker cards from their respective origins in the 1975 and 1976 sets. In what I hope will be my first of many … Continue reading “Prehistory of the Record Breakers”