Saturday, April 19, 2014

My HOF Collection - 1969 Topps #480 Tome Seaver

I decided that I didn't have enough "vintage" Tom Seaver in my collection.

Alright, I didn't have anything before 1978.   The rest of his cards are absolutely fabulous, don't get me wrong.   But there's something special about cards of these stars from their younger years.   Vintage cards are extraordinary in their own right - but vintage cards of a Hall of Fame hurler like Tom Terrific are a rare treasure for a collector like me.

I jumped on a chance to snag this Seaver on the Bay of E for what I thought was a pretty good price.   There were more affordable versions in lesser condition, but I thought this one struck a good balance for me when it came to one of my preferences for decently-centered cards.   And after doing some research, I quickly learned that finding this particular card in well-centered condition is a challenge.

Without further ado, here she is:

She's a little 'low' top-to-bottom and it's easy to see the wider margin on the left-hand side, but overall this was a reasonable card with very little bidding.   A couple of last minute snipers drove up my final purchase price, but at slightly m ore than a blaster, I was thrilled to win this card for my collection.

The '69 design is very basic and this photo of Tom is not helping at all - but what are you going to do.   It is a nice close-up mug shot of a young ace staring wistfully into a promising yet still unknown future....

In 1969, Seaver had just wrapped up an amazing sophomore season by eclipsing the 200 K mark (205) for the first of many times while going 16-12 over....get this, 278 innings pitched!!!!!   He would subsequently take it easy in '69, deciding to only go to work for 273.1 frames....but increase his K total to 208.   OH, and win the Cy Young.   Yawn.   Ho-hum!   The "Miracle Mets" would also take the pennant in 1969 and win the World Series by defeating the Baltimore Orioles

Whoa.   This 1969 Seaver card keeps getting better and better.   What about the back?

Ah, yes - love it.   Right off the bat we can see an umpire from the Jetsons add his flavor to the very same '68 K-total stat I mentioned above.   Love it.   Mr. Seaver's bio data appear right next to a really cool retro-Topps logo.   The write-up highlights some of Seaver's tremendous accomplishments during his first couple of seasons but the final mention has definitely grabbed my attention - his "15th inning" pitching that saved the Senior Circuit's 2-1 victory!

I must do some follow-on research to dive deeper into that story.......yes.......

For the card itself, the color is great on both sides and the corners are in pretty good shape, too.   Overall, I found the card to be a slight pleasant surprise, condition-wise, when it showed up.   Too often, a raw card purchase on the Bay is very risky and can result in a 'card in hand' that varies dramatically from the image you peered at in the middle of the night, on your iPhone screen.

I'll take my successful escape.

I'm very excited to add my first vintage Seaver card to my collection!

Thanks for reading and keep collecting -

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