Saturday, July 25, 2015

Very Special Cards

In a few hours, the Opening Ceremony of the 2015 Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles will begin and kick off the largest sporting event in LA since the 1984 Olympics.  Approximately 6,500 athletes from 165 countries will be watched by an estimated 500,000 people.

The Opening Ceremony itself is expected to draw 80,000 people, which is more than what comes out to the Oakland Coliseum to support the A's on most weekends.


Earlier in the year, I stumbled across this very cool set of cards produced back in 1987 to commemorate the VII International Summer Special Olympic Games.  It was produced by Leaf and obviously resembles the 1983 Donruss HOF Heroes set that features art of legendary sports artistDick Perez.


The major differences between the two sets include the card manufacturer's logo in the upper left corner on the front, as well as the actual title at the top of the card.  The card backs also feature the updated title, plus updated numberingsmaller text font, and the added Leaf logo at the bottom.


The original 1983 set contains forty-four cards, but this special commemorative set only has eighteen cards.


The first twelve cards are guys who have been inducted into Cooperstown... most of whom were featured in the 1983 set.  However there are three guys who were inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame since then and were included on the checklist:



The final six cards commemorates five of the sports events that took place back in 1987:



And according to the Special Olympics websiteall five of them will be featured this week as well.  The final card is the same card featured at the top of this post which commemorates the actual Olympic Games.

These cards were distributed in three card specially marked packs that contained two baseball players and one Special Olympics card.  Based on an eBay listing I found, it looks like people could obtain one of these packs with the purchase of two Leaf candy or gum products back in 1987.

I'm a huge fan of this oddball set.  My only complaint is that they didn't include Jackie Robinson.  On the flipside... there are plenty of huge names like Mickey MantleTed Williams, and Hank Aaron to keep collectors happy.

If you're interested in owning this set for your collection, leave a comment and I'll randomize the list and pick a winner shortly after the Closing Ceremony on SundayAugust 2nd.

Happy Saturday and sayonara!

11 comments:

  1. It's interesting the soccer card shows indoors. Best I can tell, there are no side walls used in the Olympics for them. The website says the rules are slightly altered for smaller games (5 a side and 7 a side), but besides a couple rule changes regarding kick ins, throw ins and offsides - no barriers on the side lines and touch lines.

    BTW - Special Olympics: first held in Chicago. Face facts that Chicago is the greatest city in the world.

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  2. Thats a cool set Funj i wouldnt mind having it thanks for the giveaway...hope i win

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  3. Thats a cool set Funj i wouldnt mind having it thanks for the giveaway...hope i win

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  4. I had never heard of this set until December of last year, when I found the basketball issue in one of my local dealer's boxes of mixed sports cards. I had to bring it home. I have long been a fan of the Olympics, and the Special Olympics are something I would watch if they were televised. My best friend's son is in the Special Olympics program and has even won medals in some events...they apparently host other events throughout the year.

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  5. I'm always a fan of Dick Perez, and I love oddball sports cards, so it should be no surprise that I like this set. Actually, I have the '83 set plus the four jumbo cards and the '87 set.

    When was the last time we had real actual art in a card set?

    P.S.: Since I already have the set, don't enter me in the giveaway.

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  6. Great looking set! Thanks for the giveaway!

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  7. OK, sure I'm in. Thanks for the contest!

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  8. Billy - Very cool. Is your best friend's son participating this year? I've never volunteered myself, but I attended a few practices when my brother coached the local track and field team. Can't imagine how awesome it would be to actually go down there and watch these events live.

    Ryan - Yeah... I'm a huge fan of Mr. Perez.

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