Monday, June 27, 2011

What Are These Phillies Mystery Cards?

1987 Action Superstars Mike Schmidt, 1987 Rob Broder Rookies #16 Bruce Ruffin and
1988? The Press Box Mike Schmidt
Any ideas?  It's my new goal to eventually input my entire Phillies baseball card collection over at Zistle so that I can respond to the question, "Exactly how many Bruce Ruffin cards do you have?" without hesitation or doubt.  I hit a small road bump when I encountered these three cards in my 1987 and 1988 Phillies binders.  I believe the Action Superstars Schmidt card was sent to me in a trade with a fellow blogger a few years ago.  The other two cards were added to my collection from a dime bin from some long ago baseball card show.

My initial inclination is that they aren't legitimate issues.  Perhaps they were just printed up as promos for Rob Broder and his photography business or The Press Box, once and possibly still located in Grand Rapids.  So if that's the case, I'd have trouble adding them in good faith to the Zistle database. 

They're each printed on what I'd describe as playing card-stock, so they're thicker than normal paper, but not quite as thick as your normal baseball card.  The Ruffin card and the Schmidt Press Box card have rounded corners.  They're professionally done, to be sure, but they still feel a bit bootleg-ish to me.  Am I the proud owner of a mega-rare bootleg Bruce Ruffin card?  Is my eldest son's college education all but paid for?  The mind boggles.

In all seriousness, any clues as to what these are would be appreciated.


Anonymous said...

Those are non-licensed, illegitimate vanity cards. In the old Beckett catalogs (the big ones that attempted to list everything), they had a section about them and the ones you were most likely to encounter. I never bothered including them in my checklists, but these look like the ones I recall that you were supposed to discount/ignore.

Section 36 said...

Are you often asked how many Bruce Ruffen cards you have?

Jim from Downingtown said...

Where da '72 Phillies at?

Jim said...

14k - Thanks for the info, and it's just as I suspected. I won't sully the Zistle database with these cards.

S36 - You have no idea. Friends, family members, strangers - they all want to know how many Ruffin cards I have.

Jim - I ran out of time before vacation to finish up the '72 Topps post. I should be back on track next week!

Anonymous said...

"Broders" are the Chachi cards of the '80s ;-)

(and why haven't you thrown any Twins offers at me for '71 singles?)

Six Degrees of Ron Santo said...

Check that link. It probably has more info than you even want on "Broders". Mostly unlicensed junk cards.

Jim said...

mmmrhubarb - I'll scour your wantlists to see what I come up with if you've got some '71s to trade.

Six Degrees - Very informative thread. I missed out on this whole phenomenon back in the '80s and '90s. Kind of like how the whole "Star" set thing passed me by.