1977 Topps #7 - ERA Leaders (Mark Fidrych & John Denny)
Topps introduced the concept of different color foil buyback stamps in 2016, with each color signifying a level of "rarity". I prefer the first couple of years of the program where all buybacks were created equal, but anyway in 2016 the Gold Foil buybacks were "1/1s". The franken-set binder is already home to a sweet Nolan Ryan 1/1, and this 1977 Topps ERA Leaders card becomes my second.
The obvious draw for me here was the chance to get Mark "The Bird" Fidrych incorporated into the project. As most fans know, he's one of the more colorful personalities from the '70s, and outside of this here card I've personally never encountered any other Fidrych buybacks to date.
This card was kicking around my eBay watch list for well over a year. The seller was asking an unrealistic Buy-It-Now price, but was at least accepting offers. After a respectable offer or two were turned down without so much as a counter offer I kind of forgot about the card and moved on to other things. Well, this summer when we took our vacation to Portugal I brought the fantastic book Big Hair and Plastic Grass along as reading material. The passages on Fidrych got me thinking back to this card, and I found it was still on eBay. I tossed out an offer right there on my phone sitting by the pool (which may or may not have been alcohol-influenced) for less than the cost of a blaster (and less than my previous offers that were rejected many months ago), and to my surprise it was accepted. 1/1 secured!
Franken-set Progress: 480/792 (60%)
"Rejected" Buybacks: 321
Total Buybacks in Collection: 801