At my most recent count, I have 323 Tony Gwynn cards in my collection, give or take. Not too shabby, considering that I've acquired about 300 or so of those since starting this blog last April (thanks for the trades, by the way).
Anyways, I was brainstorming some post ideas, and seeing the use that Topps gets out of all of it's old set designs (Heritage, Archives, etc.), I got itching to do a post that showed all of the Topps designs since the Padres entered the league in 1969. Not the most original idea, I realize, but something that I thought would be cool to post on the blog.
Well, I realized that, being the longest tenured player in team history, Tony Gwynn could take up a pretty big chunk of that timeline if I felt so inclined. It was then that I wondered, "do I have all of the Topps base cards of Mr. Padre?"
After digging through my binders, I found out that the answer was... NO! How could this be? I have a decent collection of Gwynn's including some relatively obscure ones: so how is it that these simple base cards have eluded me?
So, here's my pitch to see if I can wrangle up a few more Gwynn's from the blogosphere to complete the chain, from 2002 to 1983.
Even though Tony's last game was in 2001, he was included in the 2002 Topps set. Not a fan of the gold borders, but the picture selection is top notch.
But after that, the next card in the timeline is 1998! That's three whole Gwynn cards, wandering around in the cold, looking for a good home! Three!
Fortunately, after that, I'm able to go back to back to back with cards from '98, '97, and...
'96 (the year the Padres won their second ever NL West Division championship).
But then there's another gap until 1993! What's the deal? What was I doing when I was ten and eleven years old!? It would be a few more years until I stopped collecting, but I guess by then I was into the other sets, not so high on Topps.
Fortunately, after that two year rest, I'm able to go on a pretty healthy stretch of uninterrupted Gwynn-ness, including one of my favorite childhood sets,
The last card featuring Tony in Padre brown,
some crazy borders,
some crazy looks,
some sweet stirrups,
half of Tony's face,
and Tony working on his forkball, for the time that they brought him in to pitch in the middle of a blowout and he struck out the only six batters he ever faced.
Just kidding, that never happened, Gwynn's always been an outfielder.
Then, one last gap in the chain is 1985 Topps. I have a few reprints of this one, the most recent coming in last year's Archives set. Still, I need the first one of Tony rocking those sweet shades!
The '84 Topps card is one of my all-time favorite cards, being that it's my birth year card and it was the first year that the Padres made it to the World Series.
Okay, so this one technically isn't a Topps card, it's the Canadian counterpart. But since the image and design is the same, I'll slide it into this spot on the list. Of course, I wouldn't say no to a Gwynn rookie card of the Topps variety, but those are tough to come by. I don't mind a little French on my cards now and then.
So, there you have it, I'm still missing Tony Gwynn Topps cards from
'01, '00, '99, '95, '94, and '85. If anybody out there has any of those lying around, let me know, maybe we can work out a trade!
Happy GWYNNsday to all! My Padres are going for a sweep of the Braves as we speak, and are looking like they're ready to do it with a 5-1 lead in the bottom of the sixth! Edinson Volquez is working on bringing his ERA below the 6.00 range, something that you don't like to see from your Opening Day starter.