Tuesday, January 6, 2009

1988 Donruss

I'm sure that in late 1987, Donruss executives looked at this design and gave it the thumbs up for the following year because it looked futuristic and radical. Let's face it, the mid to late eighties were all about lines and gradients. It looks dated now, but this was somewhat hip back in 1988.

Of the four major sets that year, this design has probably held up second or third best. This would start the decline in Donruss set designs over the next few years. It certainly isn't the best, but there wasn't too much competition either.

In this set, the White Sox have 24 cards. There are some future White Sox employees in the set. Ken Williams. Ozzie Guillen. Harold Baines. Greg Walker. I wonder how many more will be employed by the White Sox in the next twenty years.

5 - Ivan Calderon DK
47 - Jack McDowell
59 - Jose DeLeon
87 - Donnie Hill
124 - Richard Dotson
137 - Ozzie Guillen
162 - Greg Walker
182 - Ivan Calderon
211 - Harold Baines
247 - Bobby Thigpen
260 - Carlton Fisk
285 - Jerry Hairston
306 - Bill Long
334 - Ken Williams
370 - Gary Redus
383 - Floyd Bannister
409 - Jim Winn
429 - Ray Searage
457 - John Pawlowski
493 - Fred Manrique
507 - Bob James
532 - Steve Lyons
552 - Dave LaPoint
580 - Ron Hassey

There are some nice photos in this set. It's too bad the quality is sometimes subpar. You can really tell that the team is in a downward spiral from the player selection. There are some very good players, a few great players and a lot of filler.

Early cards of Jack McDowell and Bobby Thigpen stand out. A pre-HOF card of Fisk. The malaise of Fred Manrique. A pre-moon shot Steve Lyons. The set isn't bad. It gives a nice cross section of what the Sox were in late 1987/early 1988. With a team that bad in the standings, you couldn't ask for a better representation.

There is a good mix of rookies, veterans and commons. That's all you can expect from this set. The centerpiece would be the Ivan Calderon Diamond King. Without that card, the set is pretty bland. Not horrible, just bland. That's good enough for 1988 Donruss.


Scott said...

Hey, don't forget that Bobby works for the Sox, too :)

Steve Gierman said...

That completely slipped my mind when I was going over the list!

Ben said...

Ya know, I still kinda like 88 Donruss. Not sure what that says about me as a collector, but there's at least some nostalgia for me in it.

Sure the design looks dated now, and it's a far cry from the nice designs of 85-87, not as nice in my opinion as 89 and a lot better looking then 1990.

The unfortunate thing about it is the poor quality cardstock. When I started collecting again a few months ago I went through all my old cards and the ones that were in the worst condition were the 88 Donruss. No missing pieces, but genearl wear from handing by a seven year old 20 years ago. The quality of their product didn't really improve until 1992.

Steve Gierman said...

I seem to acquire a lot of 88 Donruss. I still like it, but it doesn't hold the same interest as it did before. The Donruss Baseball Best set still interests me, but that's probably because it uses the same design, only in orange.

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