I splurged a little bit recently and picked up a box of 2005 Topps Retired Baseball Signature Edition. The allure for me was the one uncirculated autographed card in every pack. I already have the Robin Yount base card from this set, but none of the parallels or Autos, so I thought perhaps I could swing a little good luck my way.
The design of the set is identical to the 2005 Topps base set, except for the lower-case-t-with-a-giant-smiley-serif Topps logo from days of yore. This alone makes the cards awesome. As this is the last pack in my box, I've noticed that each pack has come with one gold parallel card numbered to 500, although there are black parallels numbered, I believe, to 54. Oh, and the packs are gigantic as well, so as to fit the tamper-proof card case for the auto. The wrappers have either Wade Boggs of Ryne Sandberg on them.
Let's tear in.
Top to Bottom:
8 Carlton Fisk (The facial expression and the direction of his eyeline seem to point to his having recently thrown out a runner trying to steal. His card makes me wonder...Is there another player who approaches the status that Fisk holds as a legend for two distinct teams? He was in a unique position to play roughly half of his career for each of the Sox, and he walks as a god among men in both cities. Other players that immediately come to mind are Reggie Jackson (although he's much better known as a Yankee) and Paul Molitor, who played for a short time in Toronto and Minnesota, earning a ring and the 3,000 hit milestone with each organization, respectively. Twins fans I know love to call him their own, mostly because of his St. Paul upbringing. I'd love to hear from readers about players fitting this Fisk description. I'm not quite sure if Jackson and Molitor fit, though. Clemens? Too many teams. Rod Carew? He's pretty close with the Twins and Angels. This will have me thinking all day.)
3 Al Kaline (No split allegiances here. Twenty-two seasons spent as a Tiger. Plus he hit a hole-in-one this past spring. Way to go Al!)
53 Dale Murphy (Topps made some strange choices for the photos in this set. Players like Murphy, who played their last few years with teams other than the one they were best known for, aren't always pictured playing for their main team. There's no distinct pattern for team choice by Topps. For example, in a earlier pack I got Darryl Strawberry, pictured as a Dodger, not exactly the team he was best known for. Then there was Steve Garvey, who was pictured in Dodger blue. No rhyme or reason whatsoever, but that makes it fun to open these packs. I will not make a Forrest Gump reference here.)
7 Bo Jackson Gold Parallel (454/500)
(Topps gives us the White Sox uniform. They could have really thrown us a curveball by putting him in a Angels uni. I didn't even remember he played for California in 1994. You get to see the back of this card for some more cool tuff Topps decided to include. There's a little field graphic that shows the player's position, and next to that is a box containing a standout stat from the player's career.)
TA-BEB Bob Brenly AUTO (This was not the best autograph I pulled from this box. There was another Joe Pepitone, this time pictured as a Yankee, but the best one I'll save for my year-end best pulls posts.)
By the way, there's a Halloween contest running over at Thorzul Will Rule. Put your creative skills to use and try to win a great memorabilia card!