Friday, February 9, 2018

20,000 Tim Wallach Cards

About thirty five years ago, give or take a few weeks, I pulled my first ever Tim Wallach card from a pack of 1983 Topps.  Actually, my father opened it.  He showed it to me and said "this guy has the same name as your brother."  I asked if he was "good" and after my father read the stats on the back and declared that he was in fact "good," I announced Wallach as my favorite player.  I haven't wavered since.  My father was more of a baseball guy than a baseball card guy.  Having pitched through college and some semi-pro leagues after college, he wasn't that far removed from his playing days when I was born.  Baseball was going to be my thing too if he had any say in it, and baseball cards seemed like a natural way to spark a young kids interest in the game.  It worked.  I also was forced into a lot of baseball clothes before I was old enough to have a say in that sort of thing, and one of my baseball outfits that I liked at the time bore a striking resemblance to the Expos uniforms.  I think that may have swayed my decision as well.  Same name as my brother, he was good, and the uniforms were cool.  What more does a four year old kid need in a "favorite player?"

This week I crossed the 20,000 card mark for Wallach's in my collection.  I'm not sure what that means, or if it means anything at all, but it's a nice round number.  But here are some figures.

The average baseball card is 3.5 inches tall.  So if I were to run 20,000 Wallach cards end to end that would be 5,833.3 feet, or approximately 1.1 miles.  Perhaps I could adopt a mile of Highway and lay the cards out along the edge with some sort of weather proof seal?  Or just name it in tribute to my collection?

I'm not interested in that, for a few reasons. I don't want to lose the cards, I'm not interested in any tributes and the money could be spent on trying to reach 30,000 cards instead.  For now, they'll just stay in boxes.  How many boxes?  Less than you'd think.

Remember those bright factory set boxes Topps used to put out in the 1980's?  They still do it today, so I don't know why I'm asking like they're some bygone relic lost to history like gum and wax stains.  But when Wallach was in his prime, those boxes held 792 cards.

Twenty six of them would hold my entire collection.  Sure that's a lot of closet space, but it's not like it would require an addition to your house.

Regardless, I don't keep my collection in those colorful factory set boxes.  I keep it in drab white boxes, with duplicates sorted in groups of 25 and placed in sealed team bags.  It's not exciting, but it's cost effective, effecient, and makes sorting new additions a lot easier.

On the other hand, I would be against putting say 792 1987 Topps Wallach cards into a 1987 factory set.  That actually might be a good way to sort them.  But It'll bug my OCD to no end that there aren't factory set boxes to be had for every Wallach card.  These are the sort of issues I deal with.  So at 20,000 cards, I'd just like to thank everyone whose read this blog at any point and helped contribute to that number.  Thank you all very much.


  1. Thats a great background story about your dad and your exposure to Tim Wallach. Congrats on the milestone too.

  2. Such a unique collection and a great story.

  3. Way to go! How many of them are graded? Do you ever intent on acquiring a graded example of each TW card ever made?