Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Fun with Heritage, aka Because I Can

I still have a ways to go with my 2012 Topps Heritage set (roughly 75% done, not counting SPs), but I'm at the point where I have enough to start loading those bad boys into some binder pages.  I love this part of the process.  In a former life, I was the happiest assembly line working in Detroit.

Anyhow, this task has put me in a '12 Heritage kind of mood.  And I thought it would be fun to randomly pluck an original 1963 Topps card and see which player shared that number in the 2012 set.  My apologies if anybody did this previously.  Or if such an activity seems lame.  [Ed. Note: I more apologize for the former; I don't care if you think this is lame.  I already have a baseball card blog, for crying out loud!]

Now, I don't have a ton of '63 Topps.  And those that I do have are courtesy of dear old dad.  In case you missed my Willie Mays post from a couple days ago, I've been the official caretaker of my dad's boyhood collection going on 24 years (give or take).

Cut to the chase, Mark.

Okay here we go!  Out of respect, we begin with the Old School:

1963 Topps, #124

A young Kansas City shortstop.  Howser (future manager of the K.C. Royals) completed his second big league season in 1962, batting .238 in 83 games for the Athletics.  However, we're informed via the write-up on the back that the "flashy" shortstop was hurt during the '62 campaign, thus the 42-point drop in average from his rookie campaign.  The clever cartoon touts Dick's 1961 ROY award.

And now we go New School:

2012 Topps Heritage, #124

A young Kansas City shortstop!  To quote Mel Allen, "How about that!?"  Is this a coincidence, or is Topps paying more attention than we give them credit for?  I'll give them the benefit of the doubt and tip my cap to them. That's pretty cool!  Escobar, a former mega-prospect for the Brewers, hit .254 as the Royals' everyday shortstop in 2011.  The blurb on the back reminds us that Alcides was a key piece of the Zack Greinke trade, and that the Venezuela native led Kansas City with 26 steals in '11.  The cartoon caption states Escobar recorded 459 defensive assists -- most of any AL player regardless of position.

This was a pretty fun exercise.  So fun, in fact, that I'll be doing a few more of these in the future.  I'm sure the novelty will wear off eventually, but that's tomorrow's worry.

Thanks for humoring me, and Happy Collecting!



  1. Yeah, i had heard that they tried to match a lot of players up like that when they could. Obviously there's some leeway since the best team (Padres) wasn't around until six years after this set (let alone the other, less awesome teams that would come after them).

    I only have one '63 Topps card, and after reading this, I found out that mine worked out the same as yours! They're both Twins pitchers. Of all the packs of Heritage that I've ripped, I never pulled "Liam Hendriks". Never even heard of him, actually. Even though I'm not collecting the set, I kinda want that card, now.

    That Escobar card was actually the one that I pulled more than any other card. At one point, I had SIX of them. Took it as a sign to add him to my fantasy baseball team, and he was a good enough for me to hold on to him for a month or so.

    1. So you're saying I did not crack the Heritage code?



  2. Heritage does try to link numbers from the current set with the set to which they're paying tribute and has done so for quite awhile. There are a lot of fun little connections. I think Topps puts a lot of thought into Heritage, which is why some collectors prefer it to anything else.