Saturday, June 17, 2017

Buyback Franken-set: Gold Okajima

It's been a full week since I took a crack at the ol' buyback franken-set, so let's get to it.  Today's batch of ten happen to all be gold foil 2017 Topps "Rediscover" buybacks...

1989 Topps #791 - Jim Lindeman

Jim Lindeman was a first round draft pick of the St. Louis Cardinals.  He lasted 9 years in the Major Leagues, playing for a few different franchises but never eclipsing 75 games played in any single season.  At #791 this would be the penultimate card in the franken-set binder, but...

...the penultimate card from the year prior is already in the binder in slot 791.  Gotta go with the Ted Simmons.

Lindeman loses the battle of the penultimates.

1974 Topps #321 - Steve Braun

Steve Braun was a pinch-hit specialist, who would win a World Series with the Cardinals in 1982.  I think that's a batting cage in the background, though it's hard to tell for sure.  Not the world's most exciting buyback, and also pretty badly off-center top to bottom.

This extremely airbrushed Rich Hinton is blocking Braun's path to the binder.

Gonna keep the Hinton around for now, and Steve here is off to the reject box.

1989 Topps #572 - Atlee Hammaker

After consecutive conflicts, we get our first new number for the project here with Atlee Hammaker's 1989 release.  While I never knew much about Atlee as a player, he certainly has a recognizable name that I remember from my childhood days of sorting baseball cards on my bedroom floor.  Atlee did lead the National League in ERA in 1983, so that's something.

1992 Topps #726 - Kirt Manwaring

Another new number for the project here, and a nice high one to boot.  I've always felt that 1992 Topps was an under-rated set, and I like the image that Topps chose for this one.  I could certainly do a lot worse for slot 726.  Kirt won his only Gold Glove award at catcher the season after this card was released.

2015 Topps #US209 - Prince Fielder

Up next is a name any modern-era baseball fan will know, slugger Prince Fielder.  It's unfortunate that Prince had to hang up the spikes earlier than he would have liked to, but I think it's great that he finished his career with the exact same number of home runs as his father, Cecil.

Unfortunately, this card is from the 2015 Update Series set.  I'm not counting Traded/Update cards towards the project, so Prince is rejected by default.

2010 Topps #534 - Hideki Okajima

My favorite card in today's post is definitely this Hideki Okajima.  Okajima was a reliable member of Boston's bullpen corps for a few seasons, and I'll always remember his unusual delivery.  He was named an All-Star in 2007 when the Red Sox won it all.

1987 Topps #382 - Rudy Law

I actually mentioned Rudy Law's 1987 card about a month ago, and here it is.  As I noted at the time, this is actually a "sunset card", with Rudy having played his final MLB game in 1986.

There's some stiff competition for slot 382 in the franken-set binder though.  Love the warm-up jacket, and the umpire (or police officer?) in the background there.

There's no way I could choose the Law over that '72 Gibbon.

1987 Topps #361 - Mark Thurmond

Mark Thurmond began his career as a starter with the Padres, and even started a few post-season games in their run to the World Series in 1984.  By the time he reached Detroit he was largely in a bullpen role.  This is my first #361 buyback, so Mark makes the binder!

1989 Topps #537 - Pete Smith

I pulled the bronze foil version of this very same buyback from a lot a few months ago.

That one lost to this '87 Rance Mulliniks.

So obviously this one does as well.

1990 Topps #201 - Cito Gaston

Last card today is from my beloved 1990 Topps release.  This card in particular is one I definitely recall from my '90s collecting days.  I would have loved to welcome it to the binder, but...

...can I really do that over this 1977 Batting Leaders card featuring Dave Parker and the great Rod Carew?

Nope!  All good though, as I've mentioned before I do have the crazy idea in the back of my head of trying to complete an entire 1990 Topps set in buyback format someday.

Today's new numbers were enough to push the project past 55% completion.  Onward and upward!

Franken-set Progress:  438/792 (55%)
"Rejected" Buybacks:  249
Total Buybacks in Collection: 687

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