Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Buyback Franken-set: Buyback "Blaster" Part 1

Recently I landed a nice lot of 69 different Topps buybacks on eBay.  My best offer of $15, plus a few bucks shipping made the lot come in at roughly the cost of a retail blaster.  Figured it would be a fun experiment to highlight this lot specifically within my overall Buyback Franken-set posts to see how the purchase ends up working out.

Let's get started with the first ten hopefuls from the lot today...

1966 Topps #59 - Cincinnati Reds Team

Team checklist cards are pretty cool, even if the Reds didn't fare too well in the mid-'60s.  This is a fairly beat-up card condition-wise compared to many of my buybacks, but that doesn't bother me in the least.  Not surprisingly at such a relatively low card number, this one has some competition... the form of Sammy Stewart's 1984 card, courtesy of the 2016 Topps "65th Anniversary" buyback promotion.

I'm going to keep Stewart in his place, largely based on the fact that the horizontal nature of this card's layout would ruin the feng shui of the page it's on.

1979 Topps #593 - Rick Dempsey

Next up, Rick Dempsey taking a cut on his '79 Topps card.  A somewhat boring buyback if I'm being totally honest.  In a way though, it's the best card in today's post, because it fills a new number in the franken-set!  At this stage of the project I am hoping to get even just a handful of new numbers out of this lot overall, so it's satisfying to get one within the first batch of ten cards for sure.

1988 Topps #63 - Jimmy Jones

Up next we have an exceedingly boring 1988 Topps Jimmy Jones.  A card only a mother could love.  I can't imagine this buyback has a prayer of making the binder in slot 63?

Nope, it does not.

This is actually the second different buyback version of this exact same card that I've rejected now (this one's a Gold Foil, I'd previously rejected a Silver Foil version as well).

1978 Topps #470 - J.R. Richard

Whoa!  I have a feeling this one might end up being my single favorite buyback from this small lot.  J.R. Richard was an absolute beast in 1978, hitting the 300-strikeout plateau for the first of two consecutive seasons that year.  His 303 Ks were the best in the league, and he'd finish 4th in NL Cy Young voting.

Already had this Dave Dravecky in slot 470.  This one's an easy call.

J.R. Richard takes up residency in the franken-set, and Dave Dravecky is off to the rejected box!

1984 Topps #405 - LaMarr Hoyt

A couple of good pitcher buybacks back-to-back in this lot.  LaMarr Hoyt was your unlikely 1983 AL Cy Young winner, with 24 wins and a league-leading 4.77 strikeout-to-walk ratio.  Now, had this been a 1983 Topps Hoyt buyback it would be a near certainty that it would make the set.  In 1984 though Hoyt came back down to earth, leading the league with 18 losses and registering an ERA that was almost a full point higher than the season prior.

Ouch, on top of that he's pitted against this fabulously yellow Dwight Gooden buyback for slot 405 in the binder.

Sorry LaMarr...

1975 Topps #334 - Greg Gross

The great design that is 1975 Topps?  Check.  The Topps All-Star Rookie Cup?  Check.  A name that wouldn't have been out of place on a Garbage Pail Kids card from the '80s?  Check!

On top of all that, Greg Gross is pitted against a cap-less player as far as the franken-set goes.

Another easy call there, the '75 supplants the '69.

1969 Topps #554 - Frank Bertaina

One of the reasons I was drawn to this lot is the sheer variety of buybacks within.  We've already seen 2015 and 2017 flagship buybacks in this post, and now we have our first Heritage box-topper buyback of the lot!  Can't go wrong with a new Washington Senators buyback either.

I had this 2006 Topps Kaz Matsui buyback in slot 554 up until this point.

Going to shuffle him out though and insert the Frank Bertaina in his place.

1979 Topps #539 - John Ellis

Next up, a really plain and boring (and airbrushed?) John Ellis from the 1979 Topps release.  Don't know the first thing about the guy, and don't have much to say about the card itself either.  I don't think this one stands much of a chance, but let's find out.

Certainly not a compelling enough buyback to unseat this 1973 Tom Murphy.

Not at all.

1987 Topps #688 - Juan Beniquez

Any time I get a buyback with a number higher than #660 I get excited that it may end up being a new number for the franken-set.  And let's face it, being a new number is probably the only way this fuzzy photo of Juan Beniquez stands a chance of making the binder.

Well, it turns out George Mitterwald is already holding down slot 688.

I see no reason to make a change there.

1966 Topps #56 - Sandy Valdespino

Last card for today, and another Topps Heritage buyback.  These are my favorite type of buyback, and that seems to be the case with many collectors.  It's hard to find many of them for less than a dollar on COMC these days.  Having a few of these scattered throughout this 69-card lot made justifying the purchase even easier.

Unfortunately for Sandy Valdespino, he's pitted against this great Buck Martinez when it comes to the franken-set.  For some reason I just love the sea of green in the background on this card.  On top of that, I have precious few 1981 Topps buybacks in the entire binder at this stage.

For those reasons, I'm sticking with Buck.

A good start to this lot, with a new number for the binder, and three other cards fighting their way in as well.  The J.R. Richard buyback is easily the highlight of this round for me.

I'll be back with the next installment of this lot soon, in the meantime thanks as always for stopping by!

Franken-set Progress: 656/792 (82%)
1990 Topps Buyback Set: 121/792 (15%)
"Rejected" Buybacks: 644
Total Buybacks in Collection: 1,421


gregory said...

Some nice cards in this first batch of 10. I thought that Reds team card would make it in, for sure!

The Shlabotnik Report said...

That John Ellis card isn't photoshopped, but his cap looks off because it's an ill-fitting adjustable cap with a mesh back... Plus those 1970's Rangers uniforms are just generally klunky-looking... probably my least favorite uniform from my youth.

Nick said...

JR Richard is my favorite of this lot as well. Looks like you had to make some tough calls with this batch but I have to agree with pretty much all of 'em!

Fuji said...

Yeah... hard to argue against the Richard. Although I feel bad for Dravecky. That's a sweet card too.

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