I better pick up the pace here if I ever hope to finish my Buyback Franken-set, or my 1990 Topps buyback set (which I'm not even sure is possible, but I'm going for it nonetheless). In an effort to make some progress on both in one fell swoop, let's take a look at ten new 1990 Topps buybacks today. My franken-set takes priority, but I'm secretly hoping many of these won't make the cut there and can be shuffled into the dedicated 1990 set instead...
1990 Topps #37 - Domingo Ramos
1990 was the end of the line in Major League Baseball for light-hitting infielder Domingo Ramos. He accumulated just 261 total hits over an 11-year career. Great news as far as the franken-set goes though, as this is my first #37 buyback and thus makes the binder by default.
Even better, it completes a page! To me, the best card here is a runaway with that Friendly Foes combo card, but maybe you disagree.
1990 Topps #465 - Kevin Gross
1990 was Kevin Gross' final of two seasons in an Expos uniform. He'd been a respectable starter with Philadelphia prior, but seemed to slip a bit with Montreal. His numbers improved when he moved to LA for the 1991 season, so maybe it was just something about Canada? Believe it or not, this is a brand new number for the franken-set as well...
it completes another page! The Pierce in the lower left has to be my favorite here, but don't overlook that Cy Young winning year Santana buyback across from it.
1990 Topps #390 - Ruben Sierra All-Star
Here's an All-Star subset card, featuring Ruben Sierra. Ruben had an absolute beast mode season in 1989, leading the league in triples, RBI, slugging percentage and total bases en route to a second place finish for American League MVP. 1990 saw pretty steep drops across the board statistically for Sierra, maybe fatigue was a factor having played in every single game the season prior? Either way, he'd bounce back and earn more All-Star nominations later in his career.
Already had this Darryl Strawberry All-Star from the '89 set in slot 390. I like this card quite a bit, so it's going to stay put...
...and Sierra shifts to the 1990 set binder.
1990 Topps #382 - Jeff Musselman
1990 was the final Major League season for 27-year-old Jeff Musselman. Strictly in a relief role by this point, he finished the year with an ERA well on the wrong side of 5.00 over 32 innings.
This '72 Joe Gibbon already occupies slot 382 in the franken-set binder. Another easy call here, the Gibbon is a much more interesting card for the franken-set and stays put.
1990 Topps #512 - Gary Pettis
Gary Pettis was known more for his glove than his bat. In 1990 he earned his fifth and final Gold Glove. He won it with the Rangers though, not the Tigers, as Texas had signed him as a free agent in the winter of 1989. Once again we've got some previous competition for the franken-set here...
Dalton Jones, and a decent amount of pre-game activity behind him, already sits snugly in slot 512. Not a real strong attraction to either card here, so I'll go with the obvious move of keeping Jones in the franken-set...
...and pushing Pettis over to the 1990 set.
1990 Topps #64 - Danny Darwin
Guess who paced the entire National League with a 2.21 ERA in 1990? Yep, Danny Darwin! This card seems like a great candidate for the franken-set given that fact, right? Not so fast...
Speedsters Lou Brock and Bert Campaneris have something to say about that. This one's a tough call, and had this card not been such a great one I was prepared to shift Darwin into the franken-set.
Gonna stick with Bert & Brock, off to the 1990 binder with Danny.
1990 Topps #86 - Paul Kilgus
Paul Kilgus didn't record a win or loss in 1990, despite giving up 11 earned runs in just 16 innings pitched. That kind of tells you he likely saw some mop-up duty, and didn't perform particularly well. A pretty dull buyback all in all, not exactly the finest that 1990 Topps has to offer.
He gets obliterated as far as franken-set competition goes, getting pitted against this 1971 AL Batting Leaders card from 1972 Topps.
No surprises here.
1990 Topps #173 - Tim Belcher
1990 was an off-year in an otherwise stellar five-year stint with the Dodgers to begin his career. In each of the other four seasons in Dodger blue, Tim finished with a win percentage above .500 and an ERA in the 2.00 range (I had no idea he was that good, even for a short stretch!). In '90 though, he finished 9-9 with an ERA of 4.00.
John Lowenstein's mighty bat barrel has been resident in slot 173 of the franken-set for a long while.
It'll remain that way, with Belcher strengthening the '90 buyback set instead.
1990 Topps #265 - Pete O'Brien
Pete O'Brien spent the first seven years of his MLB career with the Rangers, and the final four with the Mariners. Sandwiched in between was a lone season in Cleveland, in 1989. By 1990 he was with Seattle, and his stats were on the decline. Pete has zero shot at making the franken-set...
...because this killer Robin Yount buyback blocks the way.
1990 Topps #490 - Dan Plesac
Last buyback for today, pitcher Dan Plesac. Good Lord this guy got a lot of use over the course of his career. He appeared in 66 games for the Brew Crew in 1990, and that's not even anywhere near his career high! Over the course of 18 seasons he appeared well over 1,000 times. This is my first #490 buyback to date, and enters the Buyback Franken-set by default.
Not a bad run today, three new entrants into the franken-set (two of which completed pages!), and seven cards closer to a 1990 buyback set as well. I'm hoping to get back to more frequent and regular posting for this project as the summer rolls in here, got plenty ready to go.
Thanks as always for stopping by!
Franken-set Progress: 649/792 (81%)
1990 Topps Buyback Set: 118/792 (14%)
"Rejected" Buybacks: 586
Total Buybacks in Collection: 1,353