Thursday, August 2, 2018

90s inserts OCD

I've finally come to terms with the fact that I simply can't buy boxes of cards from the 90s and pay 3 times their value because there's an Ocean to cross, just to get a few cool inserts and tons of duplicates.

So I went the short route : COMC.
I picked up my old Beckett and started looking at every set made in 95 and 96 (and there's a bit of 97 too) and grabbed as many different inserts as I could, as there are many I never saw in person, as I mainly focus on Blue Jays players. And obviously, since Frank Thomas or Griffey didn't play for the Blue Jays in the 90s, Toronto players didn't appear in each and every insert set. I will show most of my findings here (there are a dozen more that I did not scan and that aren't really that interesting to begin with but needed to find their way in my binders), along with their seed ratio (not sure that's a word) and book value in 98 compared with what I actually paid for them (and COMC, because of their .50ct minimum fee isn't the cheapest option in the world). Because we all love BV. Especially the high column.

First, Blue Jays cards, yay ! (and yes, I count that Molitor Total Bases as a Blue Jay, even if there's the Twins logo down there. Seeded 1:72 then, worth $6 and paid $1 for it). Nothing very high end or exciting actually. The Alex Gonzalez Potential unlimited was seeded 1:32 and the Molitor Big Sticks was 1:48, but they were'nt worth much then nor now. I really love those Predictor cards too.

 NOMOMANIA. 1:9 bv $10, paid .88cts for it. Not Flair's best design but it's ok.

 I love early SP and I collect Maddux, so bingo. 1:40 $15 BV, .99cts on comc.

 This insane insert was totally new to me. There was a protective sheet on it (that I immediately removed, of course) and the right is mirrolike. It scanned quite well, I love the effect. 1:16 BV $30 (yes, you read correctly), cost me .50ct

 Not the scarcest of Griffeys, but still a very nice one. 1:4/ $10/ .73cts

 I love this one. Then again, what's not to love with Topps Laser ? Except maybe the fact it must have been a nightmare to put those in top loaders or binders. Worth a couple dollars back then.

 I got this one for the design and because it fits my Brooks Robinson collection. 1:12/ $6/ .85cts

 This might just be the ugliest mainstream set ever produced, yet it's amazingly addictive and fascinating.

How can Fleer be responsible for Pro visions AND hot gloves is beyond me, but this set is gorgeous. I already have a few (including the Griffey) but could easily add more. Especially since they're way more affordable than those from 1996 (that are the real showstopper but way out of my price range). 1:25 / $8 / $1
 I don't know how I feel about the Christy Brinkley collection. It's silly enough that I like it, but then again, only Braves and Indians players on sometimes very cheezy pictures, what's the point ? My favorite is the Kenny Lofton stealing a base, but it was a tadd too expensive compared to this one (it cost me $1 and I already feel it's way too much)

Now this photograph set I really love. I now own half of the entire set so I might as well complete it one day ! Those were seeded 1:6 so you could get them cheap even 20 years ago.

 For some strange coincidental reason, I got two Bagwells on woodlike panels. I really love those cards, especially the Picture Perfect. I traded for a Piazza one from that series 20 years ago and it was one of the highest valued card I owned (BV around $20 I believe, which shows how huge a collection I had in terms of value).Leaf limited Lumberjacks : SN /5000 / $20 / $2. Leaf picture perfect : SN / 5000 / $15 / $1.63

 I've mentioned it before, but of course Andruw Jones was everywhere after his amazing rookie season and postseason performance. 20 years later, his cards are dirt cheap, even for scarce inserts. So that's very cool.
1996 Bowman's best Best cuts Refractor : 1:80 / $80 / $2.24 (yeah, maybe not the best investment at the time)
1997 Donruss elite turn of the century : SN /3500 / $20 / 0.55 cts
1997 Donruss Limited fabric of the game : SN /1000 / $30 / $1.04

Those are all very cool also. The Spellbound must have been a pain for player collectors (right, TJ ?)
1997 Leaf get a grip : $15 / 0.99cts
1996 leaf limited rookies : 1: 7 /$15 / 0.43cts
Spellbound : 1:19 / $12 / 0.74 cts
Flair wave of the future : 1:4

 Those two are also amazing and I'd never have been able to add them to my collection 20 years ago. I have the Griffey Photo Gallery already, and traded for it 20 years ago, and it stayed all that time in a screwdown on one of my shelves. This collection holds a special place in my heart. It was seeded 1:30. BV for the Thomas was $20 and I paid $2 for it. The hit parade was 1:48, bv $20 and it cost me $2.25 (I really wanted it)

And finally, more scarce inserts of a big (hurt) name that I got at a great price. The Hot list one, of which "only" 10 000 were made, was worth $20. Got it for $1.25

So there you go ! sorry about all those numbers, but it was fun to compile and compare ! All in all, beyond the numbers and prices, I especially enjoyed just adding them to my collection and discovering brand new designs and cards. I'll also do this for 97 and 98 (but after that it simply got way too crazy and out of hand)


  1. So much great stuff here. Really makes current inserts look even lamer.

  2. I love 90's inserts! Lots of oldies, but goodies here. Especially love the woodies, the D-fense Griffey, and that Mound Marvel card.

  3. 1990s inserts were when computer graphic design programs were really taking off and that spilled onto cardboard. Pretty radical and crazy looking design. A unique era for sure. Thanks for sharing!

  4. what a trip! all-over-the-page awesomeness! I remember Total Bases, so cool and quite HOT! The earl die cut Hot Gloves are cards I still pursue. Looks like you had fun filling up your cart!