Card Review: 9.5
These cards present a bit of a dilemma for me. How do I catalog them? This is a 1985 Topps card, and it's technically my 282nd 1985 Topps Wallach card. But that's not how it's being tallied for purposes of my count. This is a "new" card.
Going forward, the hobby publications, both print and online, are going to catalog these as 2017 cards. So for purposes of conformity, I'm going to as well. It's not the first time I've run into the issue these cards present, but it bugs me a lot more this time around. The recent "Leaf Memories" issues were the same idea. Except they put their's in a ridiculously high end (read; expensive) product and individually numbered them. I ridiculed the product, counted the cards, and moved on. So while I don't have scorn for these like I did the Leaf product, the issue of how to count them bothers me a lot more.
My issue with these is that I can't simply post them, label them, put them in my binder where I keep one copy of each Wallach I have, and move along. I love Topps. This particular 1985 Wallach is on the short list for my All-Time favorite baseball card, even with goofy foil stamping. Calling it something other than a 1985 Topps, even though it's clearly a 1985 Topps (it's 32 years old and says so right on the back), really bugs me.
If Leaf wanted to take some of their forgettable early 90's efforts, stamp them up, and call it something new, fine. Leaf is free to tarnish their previous sets that way, I don't care. It's not that important to me. But from the perspective of a guy born in 1979 who grew up collecting cards, Topps base sets really are classic and iconic. Where as Leaf sounded like a bunch of delusional, narcassistic morons when they said:
"In the 20th Century, there are a number of sets which clearly stand out as both noteworthy and universally loved, 1990 Leaf was definitely one such set...Leaf’s last 2012 release is a salute to one of baseball’s greatest sets. With that, we introduce 2012 LEAF MEMORIES BASEBALL.
This exciting set is a wonderful combination of both original 1990 Leaf buybacks (specially foil stamped and numbered) and cards that never were in 1990 Leaf."
Topps actually can lay claim having sets that are "both noteworthy and universally loved." And while I may not love pulling these out of packs where a base card need should be instead, I can also see how these might be wildly appealing to kids. I would have been jump up and down excited to pull a twenty year old card out of a pack in 1988. And I'm sure that's the target audience who Topps is going for with these. So if there are going to be inserts (there shouldn't be), these are as good as any I guess. So why don't I give Leaf the same credit I give Topps? Because those shameless scammers were charging $135 for a box that contained 10 cards. They weren't trying to draw kids in, they were providing cover for guys whose wife's wouldn't allow them to drop $135 on a pack of two autograph cards. These Topps buybacks actually achieve the goal that Leaf pretended to be trying to achieve.
I will be making one deviation from the norm for cataloging these. I won't be counting the different colored stamps as different cards. That's just too much for me to handle. I'll keep track, but 1985 Bronze and Gold won't be two different cards on my counter, and they'll all be posted/updated on this page. So with that, here's the count for the 2017 Rediscover Topps 1985 Wallach.
Number of Cards in my Collection: