The year was 1991. Terminator 2 was the movie to see. Magic Johnson shocked the sports world with his special announcement. Some guy on the street captured a few LAPD officers beating Rodney King on video. Pearl Jam released its debut album. The Cold War ends. Debbie Trout gives birth to her son, Mike.
And Topps celebrates their 40th Anniversary by giving away a copy of every single regular issued baseball card from 1952 to 1990. Although the higher value cards were issued as redemptions, most of the singles were randomly inserted into packs and the whole "buy back" craze began.
Back then I thought it was the coolest thing in the world to pull one of those "buy back" cards. It didn't matter if I pulled a 1981 Mets team checklist or a 1988 Mike Aldrete. The idea of pulling an old card out of a current pack was really cool.
But the question is...
Are you a fan of buy backs?
Obviously... the idea of pulling a 1956 Ted Williams is appealing. I would even be excited to pull a 1985 Rollie Fingers. But I'm starting to question whether or not I want to pull some random vintage common with a Topps Original stamp on it.
My recent flea market purchase of two 2015 Topps jumbo boxes added four vintage singles from the 70's to my collection. At first I was pretty excited to see these sitting in the boxes. The fact is... they're vintage cards. But then I started thinking...
1973 Topps #457
Who the heck is John Strohmayer? Never heard of the guy. Well... at least he'll fit nicely into my Montreal Expos PC.
1974 Topps #437
Another Expo. Another guy I've never heard of.
1976 Topps #77
Finally. A name I recognize. Unfortunately... the only reason I remember him is because he passed away a few years ago.
1977 Topps #196
Jackpot. Winnah... winnah... chicken dinnah. Len Randle is a baseball legend. He's quite possibly the only guy to ever try this...
Anyways getting back to the point. I'm sort of torn when it comes to "buy back" cards. They're great conversation pieces and provide opportunities for bloggers suffering from writer's block.
Then again... at what point do these lose their luster?
I guess for now... I'll tip my cap to Topps. But they might want to wait another twenty-four years before they insert "buy backs" into their products. Otherwise they risk flooding the hobby with 1977 Topps Lenny Randles.
Happy Wednesday and sayonara!