I received another package from the ever generous P-Town Tom of the Waiting 'Til Next Year blog after I commented on a recent post where he asked why there weren't any Indians collectors. While the primary team I collect is the Reds, I also enjoy collecting Indians and Expos cards. A few short weeks later, a box that was literally crammed full of Indians and Expos arrived on my doorstep, much to my delight.
There was a really good batch of Manny Ramirez cards included, so much so that I could've easily made a whole post out of just those alone. However, I picked these out as they were the rookie cards included in the batch and long before the phrase "Manny being Manny" was uttered in the baseball lexicon. The photo on the Collector's Choice card makes him look like an extra on the set of Major League 2 while most of the others feature him a road uniform. I really like the parallel of the Pinnacle card. I believe its called a "dufex parallel" by most people out there but I could be wrong. If someone knows for certain what those are called, by all means let me know in the comments.
I love me some oddballs and I love oddballs even better when they include old timers such as Lou Boudreau and Cy Young. Looking at these two things jump out at me immediately. First, I had no idea that Ralph Kiner played for the Indians. According to Baseball Reference, he played 113 games for the Tribe in 1955, his final season in the bigs. The second thing is that I have no clue who Andre Thornton is. Going back to Baseball Reference, Thornton carved out a pretty serviceable 14-year career, ten of which was with Cleveland, was a two-time all-star (1982 and 1984) and a Silver Slugger award in 1984.
USA Baseball cards seem to be a staple of Tom's packages, although they were missing from the last package. Seeing the card of Francisco Lindor in the package was definitely one of the highlights for me. Justus Sheffield was sent to the Yankees just recently by the Indians for Andrew Miller in the hopes that Miller can be a dominant closer for them down the stretch.
I may have mentioned this before but I never was a big fan of Albert Belle. He always came across to me as having no respect for the game and being in it just for the money ... but could he ever launch some homers. When playing knothole baseball, I started emulating his swing just because it looked easy to do. Pictured above are a few Donruss cards. I always liked 94 Donruss, mainly because they used a full logo.
Here's three people, Dave Roberts, Doc Gooden, and David Justice, who I'd forgotten had played for the Indians. Does anyone really remember Doc Gooden's stint in Cleveland? I don't.
This batch is a good representation of the variety that Tom's brick contained. There was both new and old, new stuff featuring old guys, reprints, etc. Just a great smorgasbord of cards to feast on. It's not every day that I get an Early Wynn card in the mail either.
I'll round this out with a sampling of Expos. About 3/4 of the brick was Indians with the remaining 1/4 being Expos cards. These were the ones that immediately jumped out to me. I'm pretty sure I might be able to use that Raines card in my 84 Topps set.
A big thanks to Tom for all the great stuff. Its always nice when I can add quality cards to my team collections.