I picked up this lot of "300" 1982 Topps Wallach cards on ebay for a very reasonable price recently. I've mentioned it before, but the way I store my Wallach cards is that I put groups of 25 of the same card in team bags, then those are stored in larger white storage boxes. When it came time to bag these cards and put them with the other '82 Topps I discovered that there were not 300 cards, but rather 332 cards. So I received about 10% more than promised. No complaints.
With this acquisition, 1982 Topps now becomes my most abundant Wallach card, and the first card that I have acquired over 800 copies of. As of the time of writing this post, the count for 1982 Topps sits at 819 copies, passing 1987 Topps and 1988 Donruss for #1 on the total cards list.
The fact lots like this one exist is a testament to the madness that was the card market in the early 1980's. The rookie card hysteria and frenzy, at least in my few, dwarfs any of the current mania for rare 1/1 cards or the early excitement for inserts in the mid 90's. Maybe I'm just biased by my age demographic, but I really think it did. As a kid, I could buy a 35¢ pack of cards and pull a big time rookie and believe that I had something valuable. I was part of it with only mere quarters and dimes in my pocket to spend. I wasn't speculating on 100 card lots of rookies like older, deeper pocketed collector's were, but I was still a part of it. I just don't see nine year olds breaking cases of Bowman Chrome today, let alone buying cards in the card aisle at Target. The rookie card frenzy was all inclusive, and I believe, much easier for non-collectors and casual baseball fans to understand,and subsequently take part in. Explaining to your grandmother why a '63 Rose was significant, or even a '77 Dale Murphy, was a lot easier than it is today explaining why a green sparkle variant cost more than a regular card without the silly looking sparkle. Non-collector's were much more likely to decide they should go to a card shop and find the vintage rookie of their favorite player, than a non-collector today is to suddenly decide he has to have the Silver bordered Nelson Cruz SP Auto. Accessibility and simplicity made it bigger. Or at least, that's what I'm arguing.
I imagine whoever sold me this lot of Wallach's was one of those big time rookie card speculator's. Perhaps he had some winners, like selling off 300 '86 Fleer Canseco's in 1988 at $40 a pop, but I imagine he had a lot of losers too, such as these Wallachs. He (or she) held onto them for 35 years only to let them go for pennies apiece. Their loss, is my gain.