Saturday, March 19, 2016

The ultimate odd ball

Like many of the bloggers out there, I'm not as young as I used to be. I've been in and out of the hobby since I was a kid, and have collected many different cards many different ways. So seeing odd ball or regional cards is nothing new. If you're a team collector that lives in the region of your team, there is almost no limit to the stuff you'll see. Just off the top of my head I can think of those awesome Fire Safety issues, numerous food issues (Post, Kraft, Dempster's, Maxwell's House) and restaurant issues (McDonald's, Denny's) before getting into stadium giveaways and licensed/collector issues.

As a player collector, depending on the player, I guess, you get to look across regions. This, for me, is a lot of fun, because now different foods, restaurants, etc enter the mix. I love the fact that with Joe Carter, I am looking for regional issues from the Cubs, Padres and Indians, in addition to the Blue Jays -- and that's just because that's what I know about. I'm not even aware of any regional issues that show Joe with the Orioles or Giants.

And the truth is, in most cases, I know what I'm looking for. I mean, sure there is an issue here or there, or a variation I don't know about. Actually, there are dozens of variations I don't know about, but many of the issues are on checklists if you go about this methodically (which I don't -- I go from memory a lot and end up with duplicates now and again as a result).

But every now and again, something like this beauty appears on your radar. For my money, this card defines odd ball. I've never seen it before, never heard of it, and don't even know where to begin with trying to find it on a checklist like Beckett or in the Standard Catalog. This is the kind of card that makes it into your collection without ever even being a consideration on your wantlist.

And for the minimum bid of $2.99 from a local seller, there was no way I was passing this up.

Check this out! Without even looking at the back it's obvious that this was printed by a photography studio. The feel of the stock screams photo. There is an odd, almost powder-coat like texture on the blue parts of this photo on the front, and based on that banner, one has to assume this was used as advertising during the 1991 All-Star game hosted at Skydome.

On the back we have what is very clearly a sticker. It is advertising 'High Five Photography', 'Legends of the Game' and 'Rewards by Design'. To be honest, I have never heard of 'High Five Photography' or 'Rewards by Design', but 'Legends of the Game' is a sports cards and memorabilia shop in Toronto. I haven't been there in probably 7-8 years, but that address on Google Maps/Streetview suggests they are still in operation. Too bad the internet wasn't invented sooner so that they could advertise a web site on there...otherwise I have to phone them and risk talking to a real person ;)

In all seriousness, it might be fun to travel down there one day and check them out. It'd actually be interesting to take this card with me and see what they have to say about it. I wonder how it was distributed, if they printed other players, or different years/series. It might be interesting to see their reaction to even seeing this card again, or what they'd think of the idea that I bought it on eBay.

Now that I've typed that, it almost feels like I *have* to go on just such an adventure.

Thanks for reading!



  1. I love oddballs, and that is a great one! Fantastic find!

  2. That is really cool. I had the misfortune of being on the outer reaches of the Jays zone when this came out. (1100 KM away) We didn't get anything like this..