"It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities."
That's one of my favorite movie quotes of all-time... and it's one I wholeheartedly believe in and try to live by. It's especially meaningful, because they're words I can picture coming out of my father's mouth.
He isn't perfect, but I sincerely believe that he's tried his best to be a positive role model for his children and siblings. As far back as I can remember, he's instilled values such as honesty, responsibility, compassion, and respect for others.
The man has always been my hero and someone I've admired.
However every now... I've gotta admit. It feels good to cheer for the bad guy. Y'know. Guys like Boba Fett, Tony Montana, Mike Tyson and today's man of the hour... Mr. Barry Lamar Bonds.
Even before he got involved with PED's, Barry was one of those players the media and fans either loved or hated. Now that he's the single season and career home run leader those feelings have only been amplified.
I can't help but remember seeing him step into the batter's box and watching the level of energy soar throughout the stadium. Like guys like Clayton Kershaw and Jose Altuve... I couldn't help but cheer for him even though he played on a rival team.
Over the years, I've picked up his cards here and there if they were too good to pass up. Then about a year or two ago, I decided to pursue his cards a little more aggressively.
Today I figured I'd show off some of the key cards in my relatively small Barry Bonds PC. Let's kick things off with my collection of autographs:
2001 Bowman Heritage Autographs #BHA-BB
1999 Topps Autographs #A10
I've sort have been obsessed with trying to add affordable on-card, pack pulled, MLB licensed autographs of Bonds.
1999 Stadium Club Autographs #SCA3
2000 UD Pros and Prospects Game Jersey Autographs #BB
2002 Fleer Showcase Baseball's Best Memorabilia Autographs #NNO
As of right now, all of my autographs were produced in the late 90's or early 2000's. I'd like to eventually expand to newer Topps autographs, but so far none of them have fallen into a price range I'm comfortable with.
2000 Skybox Autographics #NNO
2001 Topps Gallery Autographs #GA-BB
The 2001 Topps Gallery was the first autographed Bonds card I ever purchased and one of the more expensive. It's also one of my favorites.
In addition to these seven autographed cards, I also own an autographed hat and baseball:
Back in 2001, Fleer released a product called Fleer Legacy. Each box contained one autographed hat. I've picked up a few of these over the years and Bonds was one of them.
The signed baseball was purchased at a card show off of a friend for $55... which still seems like it's a pretty good price.
Next up are a handful of memorabilia cards I've picked up over the years:
I don't really go out of my way to look for memorabilia cards, but if I stumble across one at a card show or on COMC for $3 or less, I'll grab it.
Moving along... here are the rookie cards I've managed to add:
I'm still missing his 1986 Fleer Update and Sportflics Rookies cards. I'm not 100% sure, but I think I have both of these cards sitting in factory sets somewhere in my collection.
Last year, I purchased a few of his 1987 O-Pee-Chee rookies. Unfortunately, I seem to have misplaced them. One of these days I'll stumble across them and add a scan to this post.
Until then... here are graded copies of his 1987 Topps and Topps Tiffany cards:
I've said it before... and I'll say it again. This is one of my favorite baseball cards of the 80's. It features a solid card design and a well cropped, action shot of Mr. Bonds.
I'll go ahead and wrap up my collection with these three San Jose Mercury News printing plates I discovered at a local flea market:
All three plates are from 8/8/07... the day after he launched his 756th home run to pass Hank Aaron on the all-time home run list. They aren't very practical and they're a pain in the butt to store... but I've gotta admit... I'm glad they're sitting in my collection.
Okay... it's your turn.
Do you go against the grain and collect any unpopular players?
If so, who?
Until next time... happy Thursday and sayonara!