Ted Taylor's Collector's Corner

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    Ted Taylor has been a life-long baseball fan and collector of baseball cards and sports memorabilia. He began writing a hobby column back in the early 1970s and has been writing it someplace ever since. He was first president of The Eastern Pennsylvania Sports Collectors Club and co-promoter of the Philadelphia Baseball Card & Sports Memorabilia Shows. He served as VP of the Fleer Corporation (1991-97) and was co-founder and the first President of The Philadelphia Athletics Historical Society (1996-99). Ted can be heard playing big band and swing music from 8 a.m. to noon every Tuesday on WRDV-FM (89.3), or you can email him at ted@tedtaylor.com.

Ted Taylor's latest three books . . .
  "The Ultimate Philadelphia Athletics Reference Book (1901-54)" available from www.amazon.com
  "The Duke of Milwaukee - The Life and Times of Al Simmons" available from www.EduPublisher.com or by mail from TTA Authentic LLC, PO Box 273, Abington PA 19001 ($15 ppd.).

  "The Glenside Kid” – a story about growing up in the mid-20th century - available from www.eduPublisher.com or by mail from TTA Authentic LLC, P. O. Box 273, Abington PA 19001 ($24 ppd).

December 10, 2014

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays

This is our 39th Year of hobby columns

Ted Taylor’s Collector’s Corner

New Book about the Phillies getting near

  My eighth, and latest, book, “The 20th Century Phillies, You can’t tell the players without a scorecard” is at the publisher. It will be timed for early spring to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the first Phillies NL pennant (1915).

 Like my earlier “Philadelphia Athletics by The Numbers” this book devotes two full chapters to the 2,000-plus men who wore Phils uniforms (1901-99) and the numbers that adorned their jerseys. There will also be well over 500 bios of individual players and a full chapter devoted to the Philadelphia Stars of the Negro National League.

 The book looks at how close the new Phillies ballpark came to being located outside the city limits, all the men who wore Phils uniforms and are now in the Hall of Fame, and chapters on managers, coaches, general managers and owners.

 An in-depth look, also, at the five teams (1915, 1950, 1980, 1983, 1993) that won NL pennant in the 20th Century.

 Borrowing from my successful “Glenside Kid” book I will offer “The Glenside Kid remembers” personal observations about events and the players.

Topps Baseball issues…

  Topps Supreme Baseball, a mainstay in football made its baseball debut in 2013 but as an Asian-exclusive (guess that’s how I missed it). Now 2014 Topps Supreme Baseball brings the brand to North America. Every card in the product is an autograph numbered to 50 or less which sounds exciting until you figure out that each “box” comes with just two cards – and will set you back around $90. My box contained a signed die cut “Supreme Styling” card of Matt Williams (now Washington manager, in the picture as a Giants player) numbered 12/20 and a signed “Simply Supreme” card of Jonathan Lucroy of the Brewers (17/50). This set is not for the impoverished or the feint of heart. (Nice presentation, sleeve, black box.)

 When it arrives Topps Dynasty Baseball will be, to date, the priciest product the company has ever produced with five-card boxes carrying an initial price tag of more than $1,000. It makes “Supreme” seem like an end-cap item. As you might expect from a product that averages out to more than $200 per card, Dynasty aims to tap into an ultra high-end marketplace (i.e., go after the rich guys). Every card has an autograph and is numbered to 10 or less. Topps is also pledging to have an exceptional checklist of current superstars and retired greats. I haven’t seen the product but that’s what they promise. I’ll take their word for it.

Topps says, “Call Babe’s Shot” in 2015

  Topps has a new scratcher game for baseball collectors  ripping packs of 2015 Topps Series 1!

  Seeded into packs of 2015 Topps Baseball Series 1 are game cards that harken back to the scratcher games frequently found in packs of Topps in the early 1980s.  The 21st Century version, called Babe Ruth’s Call Your Shot Game, allows collectors “Call Their Shot” by choosing from 3 different options: 

Editor’s note: I don’t know about you, but I’m choosing a chance at the trips if I get a shot.

2014 Phillies cards – how many are pictured?

 Reader Walter Czop (see trivia answer below) had a question for me:

  “If I went through all of the 2014 issued baseball sets (including all manufacturers and updates), could I put together a Phillies team set for a majority of the team, with all players listed as Phillies on the card?

  I know there are some players like Koyie Hill who had a cup of coffee, but is the above possible?”

  Yes, a pretty representative team set is possible, and follows:

  My 2014 Phillies team set - compiled as close as possible using all the available sets - including Topps two minor league issues provided the following 27 players, plus manager and mascot, all in Phils uniforms:

  Manager - Sandberg

  Pitchers - Hamels, Giles, Garcia, Lee, Papelbon, Kendrick, Burnett, Bastardo, Pettibone, Buchannan, Gonzales, Martin.

  Catchers - Nieves, Ruiz

  Infielders - Howard, Rollins, Asche, Utley, Rupp, Franco, Galvis, Brignac.

  Outfielders - Revere, Brown, Mayberry, Byrd, Sizemore.

  Others (either in minor league affiliate uniforms or Phils uniforms but never played with the team in '14. Halladay (retired), Wright (p), Biddle (p), Gueller (p), Knapp (c), Crawford (if), Oberto (if), Perkins (of), Susdorf (of),, Pujols (of). Of note, the Phillie Phanatic also had a card.

   Columnist's note: I have been collecting my baseball cards this way – team sets – since 2000. As a result I have the first and/rookie cards of just about everyone currently in the big leagues right now. Despite the fact that the card sets endlessly cover the same group of stars, they do sprinkle enough marginal players (especially in Bowman) to make the chase worthwhile. I always keep, what I consider, the best card of each player.

2014 Topps Chrome Football

  The relatively straight forward mix of rookie autographs, plentiful Refractors and chromium stock in the new Topps 2014 Chrome Football marks the return of one of the sport's more perennially popular product. This year doesn't offer collector’s much in the way of drastic changes but if it ain’t broke don’t fix it, I say.

  The 24 packs (four cards-per) offers one signed rookie card the base set has 220 cards. The checklist is split evenly between rookies and veterans and the parallels are plentiful.

 Hobby boxes are selling in the $50 range.

. Trivia time…Reader Dan Paley offered this one. What player (1960’s era) was traded in two separate trades for two future Hall of Famers. Larry Jackson is Dan’s answer - can you name the players? But there is another dimension to this, read a follower of this column (Walter Czop) who has another answer (or two) that Dan didn’t provide:

 “Dear Ted:

I believe the answer to the November 3 trivia question is:  Dave Nicholson.

1963 - Nicholson traded from Baltimore to Chicago White Sox for Luis Aparicio (this trade also included HOF Hoyt Wilhelm leaving the Orioles!)

1966 - Nicholson traded from Houston Astros to Atlanta for Eddie Mathews

How about the 1970's?

1972 - Rick Wise traded from Philadelphia for Steve Carlton

1978 - Rick Wise traded from Boston for Dennis Eckersley”

  The football season is hot - Always happy for your comments on collecting topics, write me at: ted@tedtaylor.com. Thanks to Ted Silary for including this in his web zine and to all of you for regularly reading this.