Back in the days before the internet was available to the masses, people would get their information printed on a renewable resource called paper. This paper was manufactured in various ways which resulted in different qualities and distinctions and these would be earmarked for an array of purposes. Lower quality paper generally became the basis for newspapers. Thin stock might be sold as typewriter paper. Thicker stock may have wound up in books. Glossy paper usually made it into magazines.
Paper was a portable form of carrying information that didn't always need the use of a power source like electricity or batteries. If you were without power, you could always read the information by sunlight. If there was no sun, you could light a match and read by candlelight or oil lamp. It was a simpler time, but there were numerous publications where information could be found. All one had to do was do a little legwork and any piece of information they desired would be at their fingertips.
With all these choices in an unorganized world, how could one publication stand out from the rest? By including baseball cards stapled into their magazine. As a kid, a potential purchasing transaction could be decided on whether or not the publication I was considering had baseball cards included. Many magazines I might have passed on, wound up in my collection because of a free panel of baseball cards attached to the staples and buried among the pages of a magazine.
Sports Illustrated for Kids started their baseball card shilling in 1989, but they didn't just include baseball cards. They included players from all the sports great and small in their offerings. It's a practice that still continues as of 2011. This means that in any given year, there would be plenty of cards to collect, but there would only be a small amount of any particular sport. If you were a one sport, one team collector, collecting could be very meager.
In 1991, Sports Illustrated for Kids put out 105 cards. Nineteen of those cards featured baseball players. One of those cards was a White Sox player.
275 - Bobby Thigpen
Cards were always a cool bonus in any magazine. Many of the card companies were still stuck in the eighties when it came to card design. Sadly, this includes magazine insert cards too. I look at the bubbly red and blue background on this card and I am reminded of 1988. I am also reminded that I might need to set up an appointment to have my eyes checked. The combination of color choice and background design is very jarring to the eye. The rest of the design is pretty decent, but the jarring background really brings the set down a notch. All things considered, it's a nice oddity for the collection.