Sunday, December 30, 2007

Forgotten Set: 1996 Topps Laser and Tom Glavine

While going through some cards this weekend back at my parent's house, I came across some of the 1996 Topps Laser set. I had totally forgotten about this set. 1996 was right at the peak of when die cutting cards got really big. Most of them, like the ones in the Upper Deck SP set, would have a scallop at the top, or a side taken out. My favorite would be one of the mid-90's (I can't remember the year right off hand) EDGE football sets where the cards either were made out of plastic or just seemed like it. The die-cut inserts in that set had a whole side taken off by what looked like a drunk man with a knife. However in 1996, Topps took die-cutting to a whole new level with 1996 Laser Baseball. Topps wants the collector to think that each card was cut by a laser to make the intricate patterns and they probably were. I don't think there is a die cutter that can do the detail that was on these cards and still have the cards be in mint to near-mint condition right out of the pack. I have no idea on the set details although I do know there are 2 series and a few inserts but nothing to write home about. Topps used 4 cutting schemes for the laser set: The ball on fire, the batter at the plate, the runner and the fielder. There might have been one more for the base set, but that's all that I know of. Anyway, this brings us to Tom Glavine because this was the card I found the other day.Now a few months ago, I had posted a little rant about Tommy Two-Timer in my blog due to a refractor that I recieved in a pack. Yesterday, there was a long article posted about my rant over at The Cardboard Junkie. Now I feel like this will probably get me more readers and I thank dayf for that very much. But my stance on Glavine will not change. I do have less hate due to the re-signing of Glavine and probably think hate is too strong a word right now, more like disdain. I'm totally with dayf on this. Am I glad he's a part of the team? Of course. Am I glad he came back for less money? Sure. Do I think this was a good move for the Braves? I think he's the best veteran pitcher they could have signed for the money that they got him for and he can chew up innings which the Braves need desparetly (that is IF he gets out of the first inning). But I'm not coming back and bowing to the man like the 2nd coming (Tex has that honor and Frank Wren and whoever it is that owns the Braves now better pony up the money to resign him after this year). I'll probably get to meet him at spring training and I'll take my autograph, say thanks and that'll be it. I really feel in 2002 we had Winson Churchill, Joseph Stalin and FDR and one of them saying at the Yalta meeting "I think I'll play with Germany for awhile". You think they'd let him back in the club? I mean really. That's something that you just don't get over. He'll get into the Hall of Fame with a Braves cap and he'll probably have his number retired by the Braves. But that doesn't mean I'll like it. However if his face shows up on the Turner Field or whatever stadium the Braves will be playing in in 10-20 years outfield wall, security better watch for a man with a spray can trying to break in. His leaving was much different than that of other Braves during the run of the 90's and early 00's. Every Braves fan felt like they had something invested in Tom because he had been brought up through the system and never left. The same goes with Smoltz, Chipper and Frenchy is getting there.

Now the interesting thing is why don't I feel that way with Andruw? He was in the system, he might have gotten a World Series MVP (I'd always hoped Jim Leyritz would get his, but this is a little much even for me), and was always compared to Willie Mays as the next center field phenom. So why the apathy about his leaving? Well first, he's become lazy in center field over the past few years and he's packed on some pounds that arn't muscle. If the Dodgers want to pay him as much as they did to hit .222, let them.

I think the thing with the other players is that they have performed consistantly and have given the Braves noteriety and helped them win a World Series (save Frenchy). It also doesn't help that Scott Boras is involved. But for all the good Tom has done for the team, I just can't get over he went to the Mets. I might forgive him if he goes 22-5 with a 1.98 ERA this year, wins the Cy Young and we win the World Series. Maybe I'll forgive him. Maybe.

1 comment:

dayf said...

I think the way Topps created these crazy designs for Laser cards is by placing a steel stencil in front of the card and then zorching away the die cut part with a laser. That's why the edges of the cards look burnt. I have a bunch of these cards in plastic sheets and they will never come out because they were so difficult to get them in there in the first place!