The Hall of Fame Challenge, Post Five

The Hall of Fame Challenge, Post Five Ungraded cards

The Hall of Fame Challenge, Post Five Ungraded cards

The Hall of Fame Challenge, Post Five Graded cards

The Hall of Fame Challenge, Post Five Graded cards

I received my latest cards from COMC and eBay today (shown above). With these cards I finished the wall of all the cards from 2016-2014. I still need a few graded cards for storage, but for the wall it’s all done. The five cards I added to the wall to complete 2016-2014 are:

  1. 1987 Donruss Greg Maddux RC #36
  2. 1988 Score Tom Glavine RC #638
  3. 1990 Bowman Frank Thomas RC #320
  4. 1990 Topps Frank Thomas RC #414
  5. 1962 Topps Joe Torre RC #218

With the completion of 2016-2014 I can now move on to the next three years (2013-2011). Here are the inductees and the cards I will pursue:


Hank O’Day

Hank O’Day was a Pitcher / Umpire / Manager back in the late 1800’s early 1900’s. He was voted in by the Veterans Committee as an umpire. As he was a pitcher originally he does have cards in the a few of the early pre-1900 sets (1887 N172 Old Judge and the 1889 Hartley Studio Cabinet set (see below)):

Pre-1900 Hank O'Day Cards

These cards rarely are seen for purchase and when they have shown up at various auction sites they usually command over $1000.00. As triple digit priced cards are above my pay grade, I will have to search elsewhere of an O’Day card. In 1994, the Conlon Collection pictured Hank O’Day so it will be that card I will pursue.

  1. 1994 Conlon Collection Hank O’Day #1201

Jacob Ruppert

Ruppert was the owner of the New York Yankees from 1915 until his death in 1939. He was voted in by the Veterans Committee as an Executive. He was never a ballplayer so he didn’t have any cards for that purpose. Once he entered the Hall the card companies began producing cards of the man. I personally liked his 2013 Panini Golden Age card (you gotta love the top hat) so I chose it as the card to add.

  1. 2013 Panini Golden Age Jacob Ruppert #29

Deacon White

Mr. White was a catcher from the pre-1900s who also played third base. Like Hank O’Day, he has cards back in the pre-1900 days that are out of reach for most collectors both for rarity and price.

Since these cards are out of my price range I decided to look for an alternative. The one that caught my eye was in the 2012 Upper Deck Goodwin Champions set. The image on the card copied the one on the 1888-89 Old Judge card which I liked so I chose it to add.

  1. 2012 Upper Deck Goodwin Champions Deacon White #182


Barry Larkin

Larkin’s first cards came out in 1987. Donruss, Fleer and Topps all had a card for the Red’s shortstop.

  1. 1987 Donruss Barry Larkin RC #492
  2. 1987 Fleer Barry Larkin RC #204
  3. 1987 Topps Barry Larkin RC #648

Ron Santo

Santo did not gain enough votes from the Writers so he had to wait until the Veterans Committee voted him in. He has only one first card from Topps back in 1961.

  1. 1961 Topps Ron Santo RC #35


Roberto Alomar

Alomar’s first cards came out in 1988 but everyone except Donruss waited until their year-end Rookie/Traded sets to include him. Therefore he has only two first cards, the Donruss card, and Donruss’ Canadian counterpart Leaf.

  1. 1988 Donruss Roberto Alomar RC #34
  2. 1988 Leaf Roberto Alomar RC #34

Bert Blyleven

Blyleven reached the hall after being on the ballot since 1998 (14 years). His first cards came out in 1971 in Topps and O-Pee-Chee.

  1. 1971 O-Pee-Chee Bert Blyleven RC #26
  2. 1971 Topps Bert Blyleven RC #26

Pat Gillick

Gillick went in as an executive for his work on bringing the Blue Jays two World Series titles back in the 90s.  He never played major league baseball so it wasn’t until his induction that baseball cards started to appear of him. One of the more attractive cards put out of the man was in the 2014 Panini Hall of Fame Signatures set so I decided on that one to be added to the wall.

  1. 2014 Panini Hall of Fame Signatures Pat Gillick #47

In total that is twelve cards for the years 2013-2011 that will be collected and added to the wall. I purchased the Gillick, White, and Ruppert cards which came in the latest deliveries from COMC and eBay. I bought the Topps Blyleven card a few months ago, the Donruss Alomar card and the Topps Larkin card I’ve had for over a decade. That leaves six remaining to find and purchase. Once that is done I can move on to 2010 and beyond.

Here is the latest picture of the wall:

The Hall of Fame Challenge, Post Five the Wall

The Hall of Fame Challenge, Post Five the Wall

If you would like to see all the cards I have collected, both graded and ungraded, and the price I paid for each just go to the menu at the top left of each page (The Hall of Fame Table) or click here.

The Hall of Fame Challenge, Post Four

Too Many Big Macs: A Return to 1992 and the Donruss/McDonalds Cards

1992 McDonalds Donruss Display

1992 McDonalds Donruss Display

Back when I was a younger man and had a thirst for all things baseball, McDonalds partnered with Donruss to put out a set of cards for the Canadian market which would increase the sale of its sandwiches. The ’90s were a time when sports cards dominated the hobby market and baseball became a rival to hockey in Canadian collector’s minds. With the Blue Jays winning the World Series sales of baseball cards could be purchased at corner stores, gas stations, and hobby stores. Dealers carried commons to fill your sets and displayed insert and rookie cards along side their hockey counterparts. Yes it was a golden time for Canadian boys interested more in baseball than ice skates and hockey sticks.The honeymoon lasted a good four or five years before the Canadian market returned to its usual ways of leaving all sports cards except hockey by the wayside.

The 1992 Donruss McDonald’s set itself consisted of 33 cards which were identified as twenty-six MVP cards (one from each MLB team who they considered to be the team MVP), six Blue Jays Gold subset cards, and one unnumbered checklist card. These cards included stars and semi-stars and the following Hall of Famers: Cal Ripken Jr., Frank Thomas, George Brett, Nolan Ryan, Ryan Sandberg, Robin Yount, Barry Larkin, Kirby Puckett, Roberto Alomar, Ken Griffey Jr., and Ozzie Smith.

The 26 MVP cards were designed after Donruss’ regular issue of 1992 with an added MVP logo and the McDonald’s Golden Arches trademark shown on both sides of the cards. The six Blue Jays Gold cards show front full-bleed photos with gold foil stamping in a rectangular outline just inside the card edges. The backs of all 32 cards show player biographical information and recent yearly statistics and career statistics.

The cards came in a gold foil wrapper inside of which were four cards, three from the MVP set (included in the mix was also the Checklist card) and one Blue Jays Gold card. Packs could be aquired for thirty-nine cents (Canadian) with the purchase of a sandwich or breakfast entree.

Lastly, randomly inserted into packs was a redemption card which could be sent in to receive one of 1000 serial-numbered Roberto Alomar autograph cards.

1992 Donruss McDonald's MVP's Alomar Signature Card

1992 Donruss McDonald’s MVP’s Alomar Signature Card

The Alomar signature card came in a plastic holder and a letter (see the post: The Most Elusive Roberto Alomar Signature for more details).

Assembling this set was one of the highlights of my early ’90s collecting although once the promotion was finished I had a dislike for Big Macs and McChicken sandwiches. I frequented the local restaurant daily replacing my regular lunches with a McDonalds sandwich and a pack of baseball cards. I never found any redemption cards for the Alomar signature but I did accomplish both completing the regular set and gaining ten pounds.



The Most Elusive Roberto Alomar Signature

1992 Donruss McDonald's MVP's Alomar Signature Card

1992 Donruss McDonald’s MVP’s Alomar Signature Card

1992 Donruss McDonald's MVP's Alomar Signature Congrat. Letter

1992 Donruss McDonald’s MVP’s Alomar Signature Congrat. Letter

If you are an autograph collector, especially for autographs on baseball cards, and you also like Hall of Famers, then the 1992 Donruss/McDonald’s Roberto Alomar signature card is something you may want to pursue. Not only is it Alomar’s first signature card, it is also one of the rarest. Back in 1992, Donruss and McDonalds teamed up to distribute four card packs of “MVP” cards. This set consisted of 26 regular cards (one player from each MLB team), a checklist card, and 6 “Blue Jays Gold” insert cards.

Randomly inserted into these 4-card packs was one of 1000 redemption cards good for an Alomar signature card. Only 1000 of these signed cards exist. They are very rare. In the last 5 years on ebay I have only seen the card appear three times. the back of the card has a hand written number beside a printed 1000, so the cards are serial-numbered.

1992 Donruss McDonald's MVP's Alomar Signature Card Encased

1992 Donruss McDonald’s MVP’s Alomar Signature Card Encased

It is hard to gauge a proper price for the card as I said due to it rarely showing up. But also because it is a Canadian card. Like O-Pee-Chee cards, many American buyers avoid cards printed outside the USA because of their thinking that they are all odd-ball cards.The first time I saw the card (2011) it sold for $100.00. The second time I saw it (2013), it listed at $300.00 but went unsold. The third time I saw it (presently), it has a list price of $499.95. Myself, I would think it’s worth around $100.00-$150.00. What would you pay for it?