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Fun Cards: Topps Now TBTC for April 15

Today’s Reds highlights are brought to you by Frank McCormick, Ewell Blackwell, Gary Nolan, Cesar Geronimo, Sal Butera, Dave Concepcion, and Eric Davis.

Take special note of Concepcion’s highlight. I really wish I could have found a photo of the actual event.

McCormick

Blackwell

Nolan

Geronimo

Butera

Concepcion

Davis

Fun Cards: Topps Now TBTC for April 14

Another day of Reds highlights…featuring Cy Seymour, Edd Roush, Pete Donohue, Dave Collins, and Deion Sanders!

Seymour

Roush

Donohue

Collins

Neon Deion

Fun Cards: Topps Now TBTC for April 13

Four cards today, but not a lot of time to write. Sammy Bohne, Jim Greengrass, Tony Perez, and Charlie Leibrandt are our highlighted players. Enjoy!

Bohne

Greengrass

Perez

Leibrandt

Fun Cards: Topps Now TBTC for April 12

Three straight days of posts? Um…quarantine much?

Toney

What’s a shutout? This was the first of Fred Toney‘s seven shutouts in 1917.

Gonzalez

Tony Gonzalez enjoyed some minor success for the Phillies in the 1960s, but he started his career with the Reds.

Rettenmund

Another day, another grand slam; this one came off the bat of Merv Rettenmund.

Concepcion

Dave Concepcion is our first repeated player as he walked off against the Mad Hungarian Al Hrabosky in 1980.

Boone

Bret Boone rounds out our highlights today with a grand slam against the Rockies in 1998.

Happy Easter friends! Just remember to stay six feet away from that wascally wabbit!

Fun Cards: Topps Now TBTC for April 11

Yesterday was all about the homer, with five of the six cards featuring a home run highlight. Today we get to see some more pitching prowess from the Reds of the past. First though, we’ll start off with a home run…

Klu

Ted Kluszewski launched a home run that represented the Reds’ sole run in a loss to the Cubs. Not really noteworthy, but it’s Big Klu.

O'Toole

Jim O’Toole is one of the best pitchers in Reds history. In 1961 he held the Cubs to four hits on Opening Day.

Concepcion

For a light-hitting shortstop, Dave Concepcion had some pretty big hits, including a grand slam against the Braves in 1979.

Price

Yesterday’s obscure player from the ’80s was Nick Esasky…today it’s Joe Price. I had a ton of Price cards growing up. He was one of those guys that seemed to be in almost every pack.

Rijo

We will end the post with one of the most underrated pitchers in the 1990s, Jose Rijo.

Fun Cards: Topps Now TBTC for April 10

I had my doubts about Topps Now “Turn Back the Clock” cards when they were first announced. But honestly, I loved them as soon as I saw the first one. Not enough to buy them (unless there is a really cool Reds card), but the basic concept and design are better than I expected. Hopefully, Topps will go deeper than your standard Hall of Famers (such as Tom Seaver and Randy Johnson) and super popular players (like Dwight Gooden and Bryce Harper). But if they don’t, there are always custom card makers.

I created SIX different Topps Now TBTC cards for today…all Reds, of course. It was difficult to find era-accurate photos for some, but I did change up the team logo on each card to represent the proper era.

Post Dodger Stadium home run

Did you know that Wally Post hit the first-ever home run in the first-ever game at Dodger Stadium? It happened April 10, 1962, in the seventh inning; the Reds won the game 6-3.

Pinson home run

Would this have been a Topps Now card, if Topps Now cards existed in 1967? Probably not, but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to make a “fun card” of the underrated Vada Pinson.

Gullett debut

Another one that probably would not have been on the Topps Now radar at the time, but in hindsight, it was an easy decision to include Don Gullett‘s debut in this virtual run-down of important events in Reds history.

Perez

Another Opening Day home run? Of course! This one comes from Tony Perez in 1968. Tommy Helms also homered that day.

Esasky

Now we’re talking. When is the last time you saw a new Nick Esasky card in a Topps product? A grand slam and a triple in 1984 may have made the cut for a Topps Now card.

Griffey 400 home runs

If I were a betting man (which I’m not), I’d say this would be Topps’ choice for a TBTC card today. I don’t know for sure, especially since Ken Griffey Jr. already has a card in the series, but this seems like a safe bet.

I don’t know if I will create cards for each day of the year. I’ve got a lot of stuff going on right now, and this is just a hobby. But I had fun coming up with these six cards for April 10!

Stay safe out there, and don’t forget to wash your hands!

Fun Cards: 1984 Topps Future Stars John Franco & Eric Davis

Franco Davis Cincinnati Reds

What if Topps made “Future Stars” cards in 1984? While the rest of the world was taking notice of the rookie card craze, Topps dropped the multi-player “Future Stars” cards after their 1982 release. But what could have been? What if John Franco and Eric Davis showed up on the same card in the 1984 set? I took the team leaders card and turned it into “Future Stars,” and created a back that included the players’ 1983 minor league stats. I did change the font on the front to match the regular base cards, rather than the “Arial Narrow” look of the team leaders.

Franco Davis Cincinnati Reds

This would have been a HUGE card in Cincinnati in the mid-1980s. Eric Davis rookie cards were highly sought after; there is no doubt in my mind this would have run in the $20-25 range in Cincy back in the day.

Fun Cards: 2020 Topps Shogo Akiyama

Shogo

We are three weeks away from the official release of 2020 Topps Series 1! A few images have been posted on Topps’ Twitter page, and I’m liking it more and more (even sans borders).

I thought I would take a crack at creating a card for the newest Cincinnatian, Shogo Akiyama. He was a five-time All-Star in Japan and has hit 20 or more home runs in each of the past three seasons for the Saitama Seibu Lions of the Japan Pacific League. Reds Country is excited to see him patrol the outfield at Riverfront Great American Ballpark!

One interesting dilemma I faced was the placement of the “RC” logo. Topps has not previewed any rookie cards for the new design yet. Will the “RC” be in the gray area, as I chose? Will it be incorporated elsewhere in the design portion on the left side? Or will it intrude upon the photo? I tried it in a few different areas, and I like what I settled on the best. Thus it is quite unlikely I placed it correctly.

Where do you think it should appear? (No, “not at all” is not an option…though that would be my first choice!)

Regrets…I’ve had a few

Redfest is quickly approaching. I won’t be going this year (for the third or fourth year in a row). I’m more interested in getting alumni autographs than current players, and while there are a couple of names on the list that have not been at the past 20 events, there aren’t enough to make me want to go. Besides that, I’ll be out of town that weekend.

Back in 2008, I attended one of my first Redsfests. And I experienced one of my biggest baseball card-related regrets. I even documented it on the blog…

Cueto no Votto

That Joey Votto card that I didn’t buy for $3 is difficult to come by these days. Last time I searched for it, I couldn’t even find it on eBay. There are a couple listed right now; the cheapest is $23.99 plus shipping, and that’s more than I generally pay for single cards.

I could have had the Votto for $3.

The Johnny Cueto? A couple bucks plus shipping on COMC.

Insert sad face emoji.

Fun Cards: 1988 Donruss Highlights Award Winners

Sabo Rookie of the Year

During a Twitter discussion earlier tonight, the topic of year-end highlights baseball sets came up. I immediately thought of the Donruss Highlights sets which were issued from 1985-1987. I’m disappointed this set did not continue beyond 1987, and wondered what a 1988 edition might look like. I tried to go with a gold border with silver in place of the red gradient. It is similar to the “Baseball’s Best” set, but not quite as orange. Since I don’t have the font Donruss used in 1988, I simply copied-and-pasted the nameplate from an actual 1988 release.

Here are the 1988 Award Winners: Chris Sabo, Walt Weiss, Kirk Gibson, Jose Canseco, Orel Hershiser, and Frank Viola.

Weiss

Gibson

Canseco

Hershiser

Viola

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