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My Top 5: Vintage Rookies

Lot's of blogs and people showing their Top 5 cards lately, and it's great seeing everyone's favorite card. In my Manny blog post I really enjoyed doing My Top 5's of some of that collection. I don't show my other stuff enough so I wanted to show what My Top 5 "vintage" rookies are in my collection. I am considering "vintage" anything prior to 1990. These are my favorite rookies that I own, not necessarily most value, but my favorite. Although, in a couple cases, they are the most valuable.

Number 5: Ken Griffey Jr - 1989 Score Supplemental #100T

Yes, his Upper Deck rookie was the card that changed collecting, but this Score rookie was really cool to own because it was tough to get. If people had this card, it meant they knew what they were doing. Though the 1989 Score was forgettable, the supplemental set had crisper colors and with this action photo, it was always an appealing card to me. I have his Upper Deck and it could have made the list, but this Score card was memorable because he didn't have a card in the base Score set. I do wish it some sort of rookie acknowlegement (a common theme in this list). I can't mention the 89 Upper Deck Griffey without bringing up that I actually was going after Sheffield at the time.

Number 4: Cal Ripken - 1982 Topps #98T

This card appeared in another post where I talked about how I didn't even know this card was a real thing. He was always a player that I wished had a stand alone rookie. Once I found out about it, I needed to have it. When I purchased this card, it was the most I had ever spent on a card. That number has been eclipsed numerous times since then, but this card was a big deal for me to get. Like the Griffey above, my only change would be some sort of rookie acknowledgement. Since the 1982 Topps set does feature a Future Stars Cal Ripken, it's hard to classify this as a true rookie, but rarity and value suggest otherwise.

Number 3: Nolan Ryan - 1968 Topps Rookie Stars #177

Like many that grew up in the 80's and 90's, I remember this card as being a "grail" card for many collectors my age. One day I would own one, and I stayed patient before I found the right opportunity. I am generally not too picky about condition, but this card was one people just wouldn't throw out, no matter how many dogs chewed on it. There are some rough versions of the Nolan rookie, but I wanted to have one I didn't mind showing off. The front and corners look good on mine, by the back has some paper loss from where some tape was used to hang it up at one point, I am guessing. I am still happy with the condition of mine, and for the price I paid, I couldn't imagine complaining. If only this was a stand alone rookie.

Number 2: Rickey Henderson - 1980 Topps #482

Rickey is one of my all time favorite players. From a young age, I always liked him and collected his cards. However, I never got his infamous Topps rookie. This card is special to me because it was one I always wanted. It was one of the first cards I ever remember thinking "wow! I need that but could never afford it". It was perfect colors to go with the photo, the photo shows one of the best batting stances ever, and even as the fake autograph. After I stopped collecting in 1995, I didn't start up again until 2008 and that was a short lived football phase. I stopped again. During a dark time in my life, I wasn't working and feeling really down. I needed to find something to do during the day, so I looked up the closest card shop. I walked and bought myself the Rickey. Excuse me, Thee Rickey rookie card. $15. Cheap. I was hooked again. Strictly baseball this time. I went back and bought a lot of the rookies from 70's and 80's that I always wanted. Then started opening boxes again. As for this Rickey, it hangs in a frame with a game wore jersey of his from the 1989 team.

Number 1: Jose Canseco - 1986 Donruss Rated Rookie

This was the one. Jose Canseco was the first guy I ever PC'd, and this was the card that was a must-have of his. His 87 Topps AS rookie trophy card is really memorable as well. The Donruss rookie booked higher than the Topps Traded card and was the grail for any Canseco collector. I needed to get my hands on any card I could of his. I recently found all of my Canseco PC, just over 200 total, which I feel like was a lot back then. I will continue to add to the PC as well from here on out. Topps did a cool 1983 Chrome relic set a few years ago, that was my first relic of his. I also purchased 2017 Stadium Club and 2017 Topps Legacies Auto. His signature was always so perfect too. As a middle school-er, I wrote to him with a card to sign. He didn't. But "he" did send a thank you and a printed picture with printed autograph. It was still pretty cool. Was always sad to see how career ended and how most will remember his career, but he was the one that got me to love baseball and collecting. As far as rookies go, this hits a lot of my check marks: stand alone rookie, says rookie on the card, see-through teenager mustache.

Honorable Mention/Too Fun not too include:

Joe Morgan/Sonny Jackson - 1965 Topps Rookie Stars - Houston Colt .45s, just awesome

Bo Jackson - 1987 Donruss Rated Rookie - Looks like a badass that knows he's the best athlete ever.

Bo Jackson - 1988 Topps Super Rookie - I can be the best running back in the league, just an FYI

Michael Jordan - 1991 Upper Deck - I'll never have a real MJ rookie. This one doesn't say rookie. Still counting it.

Let me know how I can see your Top 5! These lists are really fun. I have been reading a lot of blogs lately to learn more, and I have found some that have just blown me away. The attention to details some people put into their content and site is just awesome. Inspiring even. I linked to a few that I have been trying to read on a regular basis. Give them a look. They make me feel like I don't know anything about cards, but in the best way possible. Wax Pack Gods and Night Owl Cards are two of the best that I have found. Also Wax Heaven puts solid reads out on a regular basis (plus he is a fellow Canseco collector, his blog posts may or may not have influenced this entry a bit).

Business news: New break is posted for 2018 Diamond Kings. New site layout. New store set up with search function. This week I'll be working on setting up a few more player collections, I think it will be Trout, Springer, and Rookies. Also getting the wheels turning on how I want to start to set up the Manny Machado store. I have about 450 doubles that I think could help out some Manny collectors. Thanks for reading. The next entry is going be another top 5 list, of my favorite modern rookie cards.

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