Friday, September 14, 2012

Introducing another one of my player collections - Vida Blue

I have shared and celebrated portions of my Willie McCovey player collection on this blog but I also have several other players I collect.  My definition of a player collection is one where I have a checklist of all their cards and keep track of which ones I have.  I actually have one spreadsheet with multiple sheets, one for each player.  My current sheet has a dozen players across 3 sports.  Nobody demands the attention (or the funds) that my McCovey collection does.  But every so often I do some searches and knock some cards off the want list.

Lately I have been interested in enhancing my Vida Blue collection.  I have picked up some cards on eBay and Sportlots and I thought I would share them here.  Growing up in Northern California in the 1970s, Vida was a very popular player and one of my heroes.  I recall sitting down the baseline at a night game at Candlestick Park (cold and miserable) with fewer than 10,000 fans in attendance chatting with Vida.  He was very nice but wouldn't give me a ball.  The Giants would fine him $100 if players gave away balls - very cheap at the time but I am guessing the attendance didn't help.

First up is a 2003 Topps Tribute World Series Edition base card.  I already had the gold parallel version but this one eluded me.  I really like the quality of this card, nice think stock and glossy.  The gold lettering on his name, the Tribute logo and the year stand out nicely.  Also, this is a great picture of Vida and it appears to be from the right period as well.  Very solid pick up.
 Next are two parallels from the 2008 Triple Threads release.  The green version on top goes well with the A's colors.  I am again pleased with the photo selection. Even though I am a Giants fan, I like having a mix of cards with Vida as both a Giant and an Athletic (I could really do without the Royals cards).  He was with Oakland twice as long so it makes sense that more cards come out these days with his Oakland uni, plus I love the style the A's had back in the 70s.

 I was pretty happy to pick up this card, the black parallel.  With only 30 in existence and this being 4 years after the release I consider myself lucky to find one, plus it was at a reasonable price.
This is a Kelloggs variation from the 1976 set.  There are 2 variations to this card based on the text on the back.  This one is the "pitched more innings" B variation, A has a quote of "struck out more batters".  I now have both.  I am a big fan of these Kelloggs card and if my Giants collecting ever slows down, this might be my next area of focus.

The final card to show today is this 2011 Leaf Limited Greats Autograph.  No licensing of course but it is obviously an Oakland uniform once again.  Prior to this release, his last certified auto card came out in 2005 (although I do have a Tri-Star Signa Cuts from 2008) but he got another one in this years Archive set which I have yet to pick up.  This card got me thinking about Vida again, I won it in a Sportlots auction then went on a search to fill a few more gaps.
I have at least one more Vida card coming in and when I share it, I may show off a couple of my other favorite cards of him.  I did decide to put up my want list on the blog now that I outed myself as a Vida Blue collector.

Some quick stats.  My checklist contains 347 different cards (or similar items) and I have 230 of them. Taking out 1/1 cards, my want list contains 75 cards right now.  I would love to get my hands on 1/1s too but my thought is that it is a waste to put them on want lists.  If you have it, I don't.


  1. I collect Vida too... and like you, I can handle him being in a Giants (and of course the A's) uniform, but will pass on his Royals issues.

    Love the Kellogg's card!

  2. I love Vida.