03 March 2010

topps or o-pee-chee?

this is slightly more than another shameless plug for my side project 'oh my o-pee-chee...'

here's a 1988 card of dickie noles.  (snicker).  is it topps or o-pee-chee?
notice the text indicating noles is 'now with tigers'.  that's classic o-pee-chee right there.  never mind that his team is still listed as the cubs, o-pee-chee stopped doing 'team variations' in 1987.  so, it's o-pee-chee, right?

wrong.  the topps logo is right there in the lower left corner.  plus, o-pee-chee, with their reduced set size in 1988 didn't issue a card for dickie.  so what gives?  take a look at the back:
noles was traded to the tigers late in the season.  apparently, topps had time, even with a ridiculous production schedule, to update noles' stats and the text on the front and back to acknowledge the change, but they couldn't get the team name and color scheme switched on the front.  strange, but it's not the first time they've done this - 1985 davey lopes is another example that comes to mind.

what makes this even stranger is that baseball reference says noles was 'loaned' to the tigers and then returned to the cubs after the season was over.  he was granted free agency and signed with the orioles in april of 1988.  so, topps could have left the text off completely and actually been ok.

anyway, voici à vous, 1988 topps dickie noles!


madding said...

Doug DeCinces got the same treatment in the 1988 Topps set. Strangely enough, Fleer managed to capture him in Cardinal red even though he only played 4 games with St. Louis and never played another major league game in his career.

John said...

Yes, Topps for some reason in the mid to late 1980s did not airbrush a few of those late September acquistions. I am guessing the turn around time on the cards was a couple months. The new cards for the upcoming seasons usually came out before Christmas back then.

Now Topps (with FB rookie premiere) can make cards in one day and have the player sign them