Driving the 9’s – 1989 Upper Deck baseball

20 02 2009

1989 Upper Deck baseball

# of cards in set:  800
# of cards I own: 8
# of cards I need: 793


Yeah, that’s right.  I own eight of these.  Actually, I think I had fifteen, but the other seven suffered damaged from the binders I had them in.  Just some minor stars, really, nothing major.  But when I was younger, all of these belonged in binders because it was the coolest set ever.

And since I was younger and relatively poor when Upper Deck came out, I thought I’d maximize my dollar by buying up all the cheap stuff I could.  Three boxes of Donruss would give me more to open then the three packs of Upper Deck I could get for about the same price.  Same with Score and Topps.  I’m not sure I ever put together the Fleer set.  I’d have to take a look.

So while I had enough Donruss cards to build a box kite for math class (true story), I ended up with only a handful of Upper Deck cards.  And even those guys were nothing special.


Guys like Mark Langston. In 1987, Langston went 19-13 with 262 Ks and an ERA around 3.80. In 1988, he struck out another 232 guys while dropping his ERA a half a point. He looked destined for greatness, so I was alright with him as a common. 1989 looked even stronger, and he was solid up through 1993. Then he wilted in the warm California sun. Of course, by then I wasn’t paying attention, so I forgot all about his card. But I still like the looks of it, and what might of been.


Can you make out Nick’s line from 1987?  .272 with 22 HRs.  The guy had some talent, and despite a poor outing in 1988, I was willing to take a risk on him as a common.  In 1989, he played for the Red Sox and came in 18th in MVP voting.  There was hype.  Nick could be big.  He signed with Atlanta in 1990, but developed vertigo from an ear infection.  At that point I didn’t want to see Nick hit .280, I just wanted to see him play.  It wasn’t meant to be.  After nine games in a Braves uni, he called it a career.

I’ve been scouring the ‘bay for good cheap lots of the stuff and trying to get a nice Griffey to start things off.  So far it’s been hit and miss.  I had a good deal lined up on a graded best offer Griffey and then someone came in and offered more.  The Griffey I just won as “mint” has a bad hologram and a big crease, so I have to send it back.  And now with his return to Seattle, the hype for his card has risen and I either have to raise my target price with it or wait out the ride and see how he does as a DH.  For now, I’m waiting it out.

As far as the commons go, most people have small lots and then charge $10 in shipping, which negates any sort of deal the commons may be in the first place.  I’m even considering wax with this set (oh, the box break would rule!), but I’m a bit nervous about someone repacking spare packs and calling it new.  So I’m not willing to go all out on one of those, either.

So yeah, for now it’s slow going.  If you want to help speed things up, I’m all ears.  But I’ve waited twenty years already for this one, so another four or five won’t be that big of a deal.




6 responses

20 02 2009

I have a bunch of 1989 Upper Deck doubles (probably 200-300). You can contact me and let me know which particular ones you would like. Let’s work out a deal! This could be my first internet trade!

20 02 2009

I’ve got a bunch of 1990 cards that are just taking up some room. If your interested in maybe making a trade let me know.

20 02 2009

Around Christmas time of 1989, you could buy a complete boxed set of 1989 Upper Deck for $60. I remember my brother and I saying, “Who would pay $60 for a set of baseball cards”. There are a lot of factory sealed sets on eBay right now. You could probably pick up a set for under $40.

21 02 2009

Sorry…above should have been 1989, lol!

21 02 2009

I don’t think they are wax packs. I think they are foil packs that are tamper resistant If I remember correctly.

21 02 2009

I knew I wasn’t being clear. I meant someone would open a box and rip wax (or foil) packs until they found a Griffey, do the same with a second box, and then put the rest of the packs together to make one “unopened” box. That’s my worry about buying a hobby box.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s