I was wowed when I saw the Bryce Harper card mixed in with all the other ones. There he was in his powerful swing, glossy white and red Nationals jersey,,,and I was holding that card in my hand. Here I am 63 years old and feeling the same magic I did when I was a little guy. An Aaron Judge card…right here on my coffee table…he’s crushing home runs and here he is right in front of me.
I remember as a little kid saving up my pennies to be able to go and buy another package of baseball cards; those cardboard pictures and stats of Major League baseball players. It didn’t matter if it was a Carl Yaztremski or a Smokey Burgess card. These guys had made it to the big time and I was in awe of them. It had always been my dream to play in the majors, to be the shortstop for the New York Yankees…baseball cards were as close as I was ever going to get to Major League Players.
This is a Smokey Burgess card; a catcher for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Not a star, but he played in the majors. You can look at the back of the card and get his complete story, his stats…how cool is that!!! And of course, there was always the little cartoon.
When I had enough to buy another package, I hoped for certain players in order to fill out a team; I would make trades with other guys, three for one trades just to pick up a Moose Skowron card If I had triplicates of a common player, I would take one of them and put it in my bicycle spokes…what a great sound it made.
I’ve never worried about the “book price” of cards. I’ve got a 1950’s Mickey Mantle card, a Joe DiMaggio autograph and cards like Willie Mays, Hank Aaron and Roberto Clemente. I’ve never enquired as to their book value…I get so much enjoyment out of looking at the cards, the player’s stats and all the memories that come rushing back.
I was at Joe Daley’s Sports Card store last week with my grandchildren Laine and Ben. Their excitement looking at the cards was just the most incredible feeling…Ben looking for a Manny Machado, Laine looking for Yankees cards for me. What an incredible feeling…no talk about how much the cards are worth…just an intrinsic enjoyment of each and every card.