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1975 Topps #260 Johnny Bench (Reds)


Price = $ 23.95
NM/MINT

1975 Topps #260 Johnny Bench (Reds) Baseball cards value
         

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Baseball

1974 Topps DECKLE EDGE
Checklist & Values


This scarce 72-card test issue set was released with very limited East Coast distribution making them quite scarce. Officially simply called "Topps Baseball Photos", their serrated or "DECKLED" edge gave them the name they go by today. The 2 7/8" x 5" inch cards were sold in 2 card packs with gum or 3 card packs without for 5 cents.
Click to enlarge Complete Proof Sheet on left
Fronts are similar to b&w Exhibit Postcards from the 50's with photos and facsimile autographs. The backs make this very scarce test issue more interesting ! They feature handwritten script of player's name, team, position & date and location of the photograph as well as a mock newspaper article.

This was Topps 2nd "Deckle Edge" issue, their first being the smaller and more common 1969 Topps Deckle Edge inserts in 1969 Topps packs.

Variations of 1974 Topps Deckle Edge exist, making this issue more fun and challenging to collect. Backs can be found in gray or a much scarcer white. Also, more limited proof versions with non-scalloped edges exist and can be found with and without card numbers.

Click for complete 1969 Topps Deckle Edge checklist and prices

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Baseball

1954 Bowman Baseball
Cards Checklist & Values


Competition was raging between Topps and Bowman in 1953 and 1954 leading to problems with both companies sets. Bowman caused Topps to missing 6 cards in 1953 with Topps getting revenge by signing Ted Williams to an exclusive contract in 1954. Bowman then had to pull Ted Williams card #66 from their set shortly after they started printing, replacing it with Jimmy Piersall, who also was on card #210 making the 1954 Bowman Ted Williams #6 one of 50's scarcest cards.

1954 Bowman Wax Box Perhaps distracted by it's competition with Topps, the 1954 Bowman set was filled with errors and variations. Nearly 20% (40/224 cards) had some sort of variation, with some having more than 2.

The St. Louis Browns recent move to Baltimore also made things interesting. Bowman's artists had no idea what an Orioles jersey would look like - so they just madeone up.

1954 Bowman Wax Pack TOP ROOKIES: Don Larsen, Harvey Kuenn, Frank Thomas
TOP STARS: Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Yogi Berra, Duke Snider, Roy Campanella, Whitey Ford, Phil Rizzuto ... Ted Williams is not considered part of a complete set.
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Baseball

1985 Leaf Baseball

In 1985 Donruss created a special version of its baseball cards (1985 Leaf) in an attempt to enter the Canadian baseball card market. Except for the addition of a colorful green leaf, the card fronts were virtually identical to Donruss cards. The most interesting difference occurred on the back where the Leaf cards featured text in both French and English !

At only 264 cards, the Leaf set was much smaller than Donruss with it's 660 cards. But ... because of it's smaller set size the Leaf set has a much higher percentage of star cards. There was also a special two-card "Canadian Greats" subset with paintings of Dave Stieb and Tim Raines.

Top rookies are: Roger Clemens, Kirby Puckett, Orel Hershiser, Dwight Gooden and Mark Lamgston.


Baseball
History Of O-Pee-Chee

O-Pee-Chee (OPC) based in Ontario Canada, is mostly thought of as the Canadian version of Topps but it actually pre-dates Topps by many years.

In 1933, OPC issued their first sports card set, the V304 Hockey cards and is currently in the tens of thousands. Their first baseball set was issued in 1937. It was similar to the 1934 Goudeys and Batter-Ups and the top player was Joe Dimaggio.

O-Pee-Chee created baseball card sets similar to TOpps from 1965 into the 1990's. At first OPC sets were much smaller than Topps and included just the first few series. Fronts & backs were nearly identical but with a small "Printed in Canada" on the back and the card stock was slightly different.

Baseball being much less popular in Canada, OPC print runs of their early years were between 1% and 10% of Topps making them exceedingly scarce !!!

Starting in 1970, Canadian legislation demanded all items produced in Canada carry both French & English so OPC baseball cards became bilingual with both languages included.
Other OPC differences include:
1971, OPC even changed the back design to a much more interesting back and also offered 14 different card photos not in the Topps set.
1972 OPC included a card of Gil Hodges mentioning his death that was not a part of the Topps set.
1974 OPC did not include any "Washington Nationals" variations.
1977 the card format remained like Topps but almost 1/3 of the OPC set had different poses/images than Topps.
In late 1970's, OPC card fronts appeared similar to Topps but sometimes included traded information saying "Now with XXXX". They were able to do this as the OPC cards were printed much later into the season.

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