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Monday, February 7, 2011

Cards From The Attic: Shoebox Cards

All of the cards I had when I was a kid are safely tucked away in our attic. I brought them back with me a couple years ago and stuck them up there, even after I got back into collecting cards.

I haven't really gone through them, except for raiding a card or two that I might have needed for the blog or a possible autograph opportunity.

That's because I kind of like the idea of knowing they're more or less in the same order and condition I left them in when I moved on from cards in my youth.

I mention this because recently when I was digging around for my old Cedar Rapids Kernels stuff for those Small-Town Heroes posts, I decided to thumb through an old shoebox of assorted cards.

The shoebox itself has long since disintegrated, or at least the glue that kept the sides together. Anyway, there were a lot of interesting cards there. I was going to leave them up there, then I saw an unexpected card of a CMC member, or members. I'll get to that one tomorrow.

But I did spot these other CMC set members. It's kind of cool looking through these cards and spotting players that I wouldn't have given a second look without this blog.

Among them is that Scott Cooper up top. I have yet to feature Cooper, but he made Score's list of 90s Impact Players in 1992. He ended up playing parts of seven seasons, five of those with the Red Sox. And he did make an impact, making the All Star team in both 1993 and 1994.

Score had Cooper pegged as the possible heir apparent to Wade Boggs. "While few will ever hit with the frequency of Boggs, Scott is no slouch at the plate and hits line drives to all fields with a short, quick stroke," the card back reads.

Cooper was in his fifth professional season in 1990, getting his first look at AAA that year.

I covered Matt Merullo back in July. He was once talked about in 1989 as the backup for Carlton Fisk. He played in 31 games that year and went on to play in parts of six seasons. He's gone on to be a scout.

On the back of his 1990 Fleer card, Fleer's "Did you know?" feature is filled with simply stats. He hit .303 in his first professional season, hit .269 for Birmingham in 1988 and had a career-high 60 RBIs that year. He made the CMC set returning to Birmingham after hitting the majors the year before. He returned to Chicago in 1991.

Here's Greg Walker again, here on his 1987 Topps card. Walker's 1986 Topps card came recently in one of my 1986 Topps packs. He's also coming again soon in one of my 1987 Donruss packs. Here he is appearing in this old shoebox from my youth.

According to the back of his 1987 Topps card, Walker's humanitarian work made him the White Sox' 1986 nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award. Also, the random On This Date feature picked Oct. 5, 1980, the day Ron LaFlore swiped two bases for the Expos in the same inning as a pinch runner.

This last card isn't of a CMC set member, but it is of a player who helped allow a CMC set member to make the majors. It's Dave LaPoint's 1990 Upper Deck card. LaPoint went 6-9 in 20 appearances in 1989.

Bobby Davidson made the majors for a single rain-shortened game in July 1990. LaPoint was on the disabled list at the time, coming off shortly after Davidson's appearance. With LaPoint back, the Yankees sent Davidson back down, ending his career.

By the way, I remember taking pretty good care of my cards as a kid. I kept them in order and was never rough with them. Well, in my survey of my main card boxes, they apparently didn't end up in the best of orders.

As far as condition, I have no idea what happened to the back LaPoint's Upper Deck card. I suspect something with adhesive.

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