Sunday, August 12, 2018

Buyback Franken-set: Back at it with 1990 Topps

It's been over six weeks since I last made any progress on my buyback franken-set project.  Unacceptable.  Let's jump back into the fray here with a 10-pack of 1990 Topps buybacks.

1990 Topps #270 - Dave Stewart

As far as 1990 goes, this is a great buyback to start things off.  Dave was on a tear of dominance as a starting pitcher, and had been for a few years at this point.  In 1990 he made 36 starts for that powerhouse Oakland team, going 22-11 with an impressive 2.56 ERA.  His 11 complete games, 4 shutouts and 267 innings pitched were all good for tops in the AL.  Dave finished third in Cy Young voting, and even garnered some MVP votes that season.

Even better, this one completes a new page for me as my first #270 buyback.

 A nice, diverse grouping here with only the 1968 set appearing more than once.  As nice as the Stewart card is, my personal favorite here is Rick Wise, author of one of the most impressive single games in MLB history, in the upper left there.

1990 Topps #99 - Rich Monteleone

Next up, Rich Monteleone?  He actually pitched with the Yankees in 1990, but made just 5 appearances out of the bullpen.  An obvious candidate to be relegated to the 1990 Topps buyback set, right?

Well, I just so happen to have this 1970 Mark Belanger in slot 99 of the franken-set binder.  So yes, Mark will stay where he is...

...and Rich joins the 1990 Topps buyback set.

1990 Topps #316 - Carney Lansford

Carney Lansford, whose MLB career began back in 1978, was nearing the end by 1990.  He did appear in 134 games for Oakland, but swatted just .268.  Not terrible, but certainly not up to snuff for a guy with a career batting average of .290.

I've already got a great buyback in slot 316, as it just seems so odd to me to see Curt Schilling in an Astros uniform.

Off to the '90 Topps buyback binder for Lansford.

1990 Topps #349 - Steve Finley

Steve Finley would go on to have a very respectable Major League career, but 1990 was only his first full season (he played 81 games in his rookie season the year prior with Baltimore).  At this point he'd yet to find the consistent stroke and power that would earn him All-Star and MVP votes later in his career.

Given that, I can't really oust this fantastic Heritage Dick Williams buyback from the binder to make room for Finley, can I?

Not a chance, that Dick Williams is a personal favorite and is pretty well entrenched in the binder of this Red Sox fan!

1990 Topps #249 - Mike Smith

Never heard of this particular Mike Smith?  Don't be too hard on yourself if not, he appeared in the final 2 games of his 2-season career in 1990 and finished that last season with an ERA of 12.00.

A beautiful Bobby Adams buyback with a nice Seals Stadium backdrop already calls slot 249 home.

You knew how that one was going to end.

1990 Topps #782 - Jose Alvarez

Jose Alvarez didn't actually pitch at all in 1990, having thrown the final innings of his big league career in 1989.  Not a terribly exciting card, either.  Can it maybe sneak into an open slot in the binder though?

Negative, already had this '85 Tom Niedenfuer buyback in slot 782.  I see no reason to make a change here.

1990 Topps #333 - Bill Wegman

Bill Wegman made 5 starts for Milwaukee in 1990, and also appeared a handful of times out of the bullpen.  He finished 2-2 with an ERA close to 5.00.  Alrighty then.

Rough match-up for Wegman as well, as he gets pitted against this colorful '75 Dick Drago buyback.

Obviously going with the Red Sox card there and shifting Bill over to my '90 buyback binder.

1990 Topps #214 - Terry Francona

A nice card here for a Red Sox fan!  Sadly, injuries had taken their toll long before 1990, and the 3 games Terry appeared in that year marked the end of his career.  As a player anyway.

Terry gets pitted against a buyback featuring the team he currently manages courtesy of Tom Kelley's 1967 issue.  Love the bright blue jacket under the sleeveless uniform look.

Enough so that I'm going to keep the Heritage buyback where it is, and shift Tito over to the '90 Topps binder as well.

1990 Topps #96 - Jody Reed

The Red Sox ties keep on coming, as Jody Reed is the next card up for evaluation.  Did you know that Jody hit a league leading 45 doubles in 1990?  I certainly didn't.  This has been a fairly brutal grouping of buybacks so far as the franken-set goes, can Reed break into the binder?

Sonny Siebert's 1965 issue stands in Jody's way.  Siebert had a great year in '65 as a starter for Cleveland, finishing with a sub-2.50 ERA and a league-best 4.15 strikeout-to-walk ratio.  Whoa.

Even this admittedly biased Red Sox fan can't choose Jody over Sonny.

1990 Topps #30 - David Cone

Last card for this evening, featuring Mets pitcher David Cone.  David's 233 strikeouts paced the National League in 1990.  Definitely an example of where the colored borders in 1990 Topps can actually work quite well.  I think even haters of 1990 Topps might admit that this is decent enough looking card.

Ouch, HOFer Tim Raines charging out of the box in that glorious Expos uniform is a tough draw for Cone.  Competition is typically rough when you have a card number that ends in 0, and that's exactly what we have here.

Gotta go with the Raines.  Better career player, plus the Expos factor.

Well, just one new card for the franken-set tonight.  Not such a bad thing though given that I added nine new cards to the 1990 Topps buyback binder.  I'm on the threshold of 10% complete with that project now.  There's still at least a few cards from the 1990 set that I've never even seen in buyback format with my own two eyes, so who knows if I can even complete this, but accumulating them is a fun way to relive my first set from childhood regardless.

In the next Buyback Franken-set post, we'll take a long overdue look at a fantastic PWE sent to me by my friend Gavin of Baseball Card Breakdown.  Until then, thanks for stopping by!

Franken-set Progress: 611/792 (77%)
1990 Topps Buyback Set: 76/792 (9%)
"Rejected" Buybacks: 480
Total Buybacks in Collection: 1,167


Nick said...

Tough matchups for the '90s this time around. Hard to take down vintage buybacks, I'd imagine.

Fuji said...

Sweet Stew! Miss seeing him up on the mound during the A's glory years.

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