Saturday, July 5, 2008

Pack 24

Pack 24 (+12)
(duplicates are indicated by bold text)
18 Eddie Murray
22 B.J. Surhoff
128 Tim Teufel
132 Tom Browning
148 Albert Hall
260 Sid Bream
265 Barry Bonds
280 Teddy Higuera
367 Stan Javier
373 Geno Petralli
387 Barry Lyons
458 Dave Stewart
462 Jim Winn
478 Jeff Musselman

611 Mike Bielecki
621 Nelson Liriano
624 Kevin Elster

Looks like we're getting back on pace here, 25 new cards in the last two packs.

A few things here of interest. First is the continued lack of low numbered cards. I was wrong when I said earlier that the lowest number I've pulled is #3, Tim Raines. I already had that card from opening packs 20 years ago. So actually, the lowest number I've pulled out of this box is #12, Ozzie Smith. And that Raines card is one of the few remaining that I haven't replaced.

I've looked around for some information on the sorting and printing of '88 Score, but can't find any. And from this one box I can't really draw any conclusions yet. With twelve packs left after this one, I could pull all the low numbered cards, but that's not too likely.

Looking at my checklist, after card number 40 or so it starts to pick up. But from numbers 1 through 39 I only have 12 cards, 30%.

Granted these first 40 cards include some of the stars of the set, so they may be a little less common than other players, but you'd think after being more than half way through the box more than a handful (and no single digit cards) would have shown up.

Is this just a weird box? Or is this how '88 Score works? At the prices you can pick these boxes up, I'm tempted to get another one just to see. Maybe this one is an oddball. Any ideas?

Now on to the cards.

1988 is a strange year. For some reason all these funny little pieces of cardboard descended from space promising Kevin Elster was going to be a super star.

Here's one and if you're lucky another one just might show up:

In all fairness, while Kevin Elster didn't pan out as the super star Score, Topps and the New York Mets hoped he would, he managed to stay in the Major Leagues for 12 injury prone seasons. He even attempted a comback in 2000. Beginning in 1988 and going into 1989 Elster played 88 consecutive errorless games at short. A record, for a while. Cal Ripken broke it in 1990 with 95 games.

Elster also put up a pretty good year in 1996 where he was relatively free from injuries and played in 157 games for Texas, batting .252/24HR/99RBI, but that was his only productive season. He never batted higher than .241 any other year of his career.

Moving on. I've been waiting for this card the entire box so far. Not because I'm a fan, but because I've been curious what my reaction to it would be and what words I'd have to say about it.

Now what do I want to say about it. It's red. It's the first red card I've featured here. It's a good looking card of a promising young player. A player who had the potential to be one of the very best the game has ever seen, but a player who let success get the better of him, a player who lost touch with the fans and a player who in my opinion didn't show a whole hell of a lot of respect to the great thing he accomplished. And in my opinion a player who should never be in the Hall of Fame, but I'm not a baseball writer so what I think as a fan doesn't really matter.

And that's all I want to say.


scott said...

kevin elster's career year in texas...steroids?