So you are eyeing that 1987 Topps Traded Greg Maddux rookie card? I’m really looking for another former Cub, Ron Cey.
Because of Cey’s star power, he is among the many stars that I have attempted to collect at least one card of for each team he played for. The first Cey card I had was his 1987 Topps, which has a personal story to it – it was part of a stash of cards my late Uncle Scott left for me before he went back to the Army. I never saw him again after that, depression got the better of him and he left us too soon not too long after I received the cards.
Over time, I landed a couple of more of his Dodgers cards – not his first two, however, those being his 1972 rookie card and his 1973 he shares with the Mike Schmidt rookie. Missing from my collection was his lone major-issue card of Cey in an Oakland Athletics uniform.
I have that card now, and getting it happened out of the usual elements.
For one of the magazines that I write for, Small Town Living for Whiteside County (to be published in mid-March), I was assigned to write about a gifts and decor store in nearby Morrison: Everything Prim and More. I didn’t quite know what was in there until I stopped by to do the interview. It’s owned by a husband and wife with two sides to the store: one is where all of the handmade decor, engravings and candles are (wife), and the other is where old toys, beer signs and sports memorabilia was (husband).
Once I wrapped up my interview, I had to take a look at the baseball cards that were in store. Not only were there individual cards of today’s players – cardboard, chrome, auto, patch and all of the variation colors of the rainbow – but also junk-era wax pack boxes between $1-$2. If you’re still wanting to experience the thrill of finding a rookie of Sammy Sosa, Barry Bonds, Bo Jackson or that Frank Thomas “no-name” card, this is the place to be in the Sauk Valley.
There were other small sets there, and a box of 1987 Topps Traded was one of them. Knowing that the Cey was on my Want List, and there being a Maddux rookie in it, I figured why not support the local business and buy it for the $9 price tag.
No to play favorites, I also bought a small wood-engraved sign that reads “You got this.” It’s advice I need many times throughout this journalism profession.
Cey being on the Oakland Athletics in 1987 provided a neat baseball trivia question about the number of combined career homeruns among a quartet of teammates. Reggie Jackson, who came back to the A’s to finish his career, finished with 563 home runs – he also is in this 1987 traded set. Cey finished with 316 homers, and both Cey and Jackson were teammates with Mark McGwire (583) and Jose Canseco (462).
The combined 1,924 home runs from the Athletics quartet became a record shortly before McGwire and Canseco both retired in 2001. It has since been surpassed twice. If Albert Pujols puts together one or two more average years soon, the 2001 Cardinals quartet of him, McGwire, Jim Edmonds and Bobby Bonilla will own this distinction.
The 1987 Topps Traded Cey card is only worth $0.10. However, it’s high up in my Want List because of the interesting home run combination, and the fact that many cards from traded-update sets are not often found in single dime boxes; you’re more off finding it within the entire set, and with this one having the Maddux rookie, the price is higher than most.
Other traded-update cards of vintage-era stars that I’m looking for are of Al Oliver and Amos Otis. Oliver bounced around from team to team after his days in Pittsburgh were over, and Otis finished his career in Pittsburgh. Both are from the mid-1980s.
I plan to sell a small star lot from this set on the local Facebook marketplace groups, including the Maddux, which, unfortunately, is a noticeably off-center.
Another interesting card from the 1987 Topps Traded set, regionally-speaking, is that of Ottawa native Guy Hoffman. The back explains his amazing strikeout feat from his playing days at Marquette High:
While the ladies enjoy wandering through the wide selection of home decor on one half of the store, the rest of you can check out the sports and toy collection at Everything Prim and More: 103 North Heaton St., Morrison; open from 11-5 Monday through Friday and 9-2 Saturday; find it on Facebook or call 815-772-7575 for more information.