Sunday, October 18, 2009

The first "Kid" of baseball

Long before Ken Griffey Jr. showed up and was labeled the "the Kid" a scappy 18 year old broke into the majors with the Milwaukee Brewers and stayed there his entire career. Of course I'm talking about #19, the immortal Robin Yount. As the title of the blog implies this is a site about him. I've been a Yount collector since 1987 when I first started collecting cards at the age of 14. I was a little young to remember their trip to the World Series in 1982 but being from northern Wisconsin it's hard not to be at least a closet fan of the Brewers.

So when I started collecting cards way back in 1987 there wasn't all that much to choose from. Not like now, where there's almost too much to choose from. And back then you where pretty much set building too. Ah 1987, right around the time all the companies started super producing there product to make it super cheap and at the same time super boring.
Well I'm getting off topic. My point was there wasn't much to pick from. Topps was the cheap choice with the crappy backs, while donruss and fleer had better card stock. I still think that the 1987 topps set was the best though. That wood grain finish. Like all the cards were from your dad's den.

The best a player collector back then could hope for was maybe 3 or 4 cards of your favorite player year. Maybe a few inserts, special releases, if they made the all-star team the year before you got an extra card, maybe some food issues or what have you.

And the holy grail when I started collecting "Rockin Robin", as he was later nicknamed, was his 1975 Topps rookie. Now the card ungraded in nrmt shape is about $50 bucks, but back in 1987 it was over $200. Way out of my measly allowance range. I could drool all I wanted at the card in the glass case at the local card store.

Not to get off topic again, but to set up, my father was in the army until I was 18 so the card shop I frequented was call the Comic Book Store in El Paso, Texas, I'm not even sure if it's still around but the owner Brad was my Idol for a while and I really wanted to work in the store. I thought that would be the coolest thing ever. But alas then my dad got stationed overseas to Berlin, Germany. Here in Berlin at a card show on base  I was able to find my holy grail of cards. At this point I was working on base at Burger King and had saved quite a bit of money up. The card pictured is not the one I finally got. No the first yount rookie was what you might call a filler. It had one really soft corner and couple other not so soft but definately not razor sharp corners. I think I paid 50 bucks for it and at the time it was awesome.

Now a days there are tons of Yount cards out there. Being a HOF inductee is good for that. So now it's kinda fun to pick up new stuff. Now it's mostly off of Ebay and that takes some of the fun out of going to shows to try and find some obsura, but 22 years later I've got a nice little collection going on.
I plan on posting other trivial bits of knowledge as well as images from my collection. I would love to hear from any other Yount collectors out there. I know there are a bunch, because I keep getting out bid on ebay by a lot of you.

So one last picture to end the column. Last year Topps put out it Topps Sterling with a price tag of something like $250 to $300 buck for a box. which consisted of 3 sequentially numbered cards to 250 or less, an auto relic numbered to 10 or less, and a mystery card. I never bought a box. Way to pricey and you'll never get the initial investment back but the cards are absolutely gorgeous. Here is the first one I picked up a few months back.

Until next time keep collecting. I'm cynicalbuddha.

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