Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Highly Subjective Definition of "Vintage" with Completely Arbitrary Collation

Ok, what do you consider to be "vintage" baseball cards? Pre-war/pre-Topps? 1960s/70s? 1995? I was curious about Rollie Fingers' definition of vintage when he put his name on this box in 2004, promising "7 Vintage Cards Per Pack."

A Brief Video Interlude of the first 2 packs...

This was an impulse purchase - I wanted to bust open some packs and I was looking at a wall of uninspiring 80's and early 90's offerings when I spotted this box all alone for $10. 

This is a typical pack - there's no vintage there, at least based on most accepted definitions. I would say "vintage" should be 15 - 20 years old, at least. Technically 2003 to 1983 works, but to me that should be the most recent card. The definition of vintage today is generally 1979 or older-- the offerings from the 1980's and 1990's are rarely placed in vintage bins or boxes at card shows.

The "vintage" definition aside, after opening a few packs, patterns began to emerge.

It was borderline comical! P.S. there were no Rollie Fingers cards in the box, though he was still in the league in the early 80's.

Ha, joke's on you, Rollie! Technically those two shades of red on the '91 Topps logo represent variations! So you didn't give me 6 identical Tom Glavines, instead there were 3 each of the two variations. Don't know if it counts, but half of the Kent Hrbeks had printing smears on the front, the other half did not...

The oldest card in the whole box? 1980 Topps Hosken Powell. The newest? 1995 Pacific Omar Olivares. 1995?!?! Less than 10 years old when it was placed in the box. C'mon, man!

The best thing in the box was in the very first pack (I'm thinking this is by design?) - a 1983 Starline Sticker of Mickey Mantle. You can find a copy on COMC for around $5, so I can say that I spent $5 to get this sticker, and I paid another $5 for some very elaborate packing material.


  1. Interesting product. Your definition of vintage and mine match up. I'm one of those 1979 and earlier collectors. Would have enjoyed seeing one of the 10k autographs inserted. Totally curious to see the autograph checklist.

    P.S. The Mantle is pretty cool.

  2. Me too. 1980 is the borderline. So you have vintage, 80's, junk wax, mid to late 90's, etc.

  3. I also put 1980 as my borderline for vintage. The main reason is it's the last year Topps had sole possession of the market before Donruss and Fleer came knocking.

  4. My definition of vintage varies by sport, for baseball it's '73 and earlier. Even though this box didn't work out too well for you, it was kind of neat to see, if only because I had never heard of these before.