Monday, January 7, 2008

1987 Topps

I took several breaks from collecting baseball cards when I was younger. I missed 1988 and 1989. I think I was in my HO scale model railroading phase those two years. It probably had more to do with a last place team and finally realizing that girls were more interesting than I previously thought around that time.

The last year of the first wave of my collecting came in 1987. I was infatuated with the 1987 Topps set. It's something about that wood grain. These cards always looked good to me. Sure, most of the White Sox cards this year were Spring Training head shots, but I was naive enough to think that they were taken during batting practice during the 1987 season. Ah, the simplicity of youth.

I never completed this set until 2007. There always seemed to be a card here or there that I had somehow missed during all the packs I opened that year. This 1987 set featured a lot of players that I went "Huh?" about when the set came out. Either their association with the club was so brief that I was surprised they got a card or they were a newer acquisition or they already left for other teams. I'm still not entirely convinced that Russ Morman was ever on the team.
  • 27 - Joe Cowley (no, not the Chicago sportswriter)
  • 54 - Bill Dawley
  • 61 - Bobby Thigpen
  • 89 - Ozzie Guillen
  • 113 - Neil Allen
  • 149 - Ray Searage
  • 201 - John Cangelosi
  • 233 - Russ Morman
  • 273 - Gene Nelson
  • 299 - Joel Davis
  • 318 - Jim Fregosi MG
  • 342 - Bob James
  • 356 - White Sox Team
  • 397 - Greg Walker
  • 421 - Jose DeLeon
  • 454 - Luis Salazar
  • 482 - Daryl Boston
  • 491 - Ron Karkovice
  • 511 - Steve Lyons
  • 539 - Reid Nichols
  • 566 - Tim Hulett
  • 667 - Ron Hassey
  • 685 - Jerry Hairston (Sr., not Jr.)
  • 703 - Dave Schmidt
  • 718 - Steve Carlton (Yet, he's in a Giants uniform on the box bottom card this year)
  • 720 - Richard Dotson
  • 737 - Floyd Bannister
  • 756 - Carlton Fisk
  • 772 - Harold Baines
  • 790 - Julio Cruz

Not a lot of recognizable names in there. Go ahead, pick out the Opening Day lineup. The first two and the sixth batter in the lineup on opening day are pictured in different uniforms in this set. At least I got one last card of John Cangelosi in a Sox uniform.

The 1987 White Sox Opening Day lineup:

  • Gary Redus, cf
  • Donnie Hill, 2b
  • Harold Baines, rf
  • Carlton Fisk, dh
  • Greg Walker, 1b
  • Ivan Calderon, lf
  • Tim Hulett, 2b
  • Ozzie Guillen, ss
  • Ron Karkovice, c
  • Richard Dotson, p

Not exactly a lineup that strikes fear into you. Two batters have that potential, but that's it. I was a sucker for the Turn Back The Clock cards in this set, but the White Sox didn't have any. The older cards laid gently on the wood grain seemed warm and inviting to me as a kid. The White Sox team set wasn't anything to write home about, but they sure looked appealing. Plus, there were a whopping 30 cards for the Sox. That's the kind of base set that makes a team collector happy. The cards had a great design, but the team didn't in 1987.


hardcle said...

I think it depends on your perspective. I was following the team pretty closely then, and I remember almost all of those guys. In fact I was at old Comiskey for Russ Morman's (correct spelling, btw) ML debut. Walker was out after he had a seizure, so Morman got the call for a Sunday afternoon game. The Sox managed to bat around in one inning and Morman doubled and homered in that inning. He actually managed to hang around the majors for quite a while, earning a World Series ring with the Marlins in '97.

White Sox Cards said...

I was following the Sox very closely at that point too. I must've blocked out a few of those players. The last I remember seeing Russ Morman (thank you for pointing out the spelling error btw, it has been corrected), he was in the Royals minor league system. I'm glad to hear that he finally got a World Series ring. I remember him on the White Sox, but I don't remember him playing.

Very cool memory on Morman. Thanks for sharing!

--David said...

I love the wood-grain cards... More recent incantations can also be cool (like the '96 Leaf Lumberjacks) - okay, that is really neither "recent" nor "an effect" as it is a true wood card, but still... Something about baseball and wood just go hand-in-hand...

Maggie said...

hi my name is maggie... and i wanted to confirm if there was a player from 1987 - 1990 named lyle curry jr. pitcher #22. b/c i cant find any proof. please advise where i can find this history thanks. my email is:

White Sox Cards said...

Maggie, I couldn't find anything. One of the best place to find information of major, minor and college players would be

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