|1970 Topps #5, Wes Parker|
Parker might be L.A.'s most underrated first baseman, little-known behind guys like Gil Hodges, Steve Garvey, and Eric Karros. I bet his name comes up about as often as Greg Brock, despite the good hitting and streak of Gold Gloves. Take heart Wes, we remember you!
|1971 Topps #5, Thurman Munson|
What more is there to say? One of the best-ever cards by Topps.
|1972 Topps #5, John Bateman|
I love to visit Montreal and am always bummed that they lost their baseball team.
|1973 Topps #5, Ed Brinkman|
My set profile poked fun at Ed's odd pose here, but it could be worse. It could be raining.
|1974 Topps #5, Hank Aaron Special|
Funny that 1968 and 1969 Topps used the same photo, but color-balanced it so differently that the bat looks yellow and the background's a green fog. Baseball cards are weird.
|1975 Topps #5, Nolan Ryan Highlight|
Nolan Ryan (as Rangers owner) is again front-and-center for the 2011 World Series. Given the back-and-forth games, I imagine he wanted to pick up a glove again and brush back some batters on more than one occasion.
|1976 Topps #5, Tom Seaver Record Breaker|
Pretty sure Seaver can strike anyone out, but that retouched red helmet gives me the willies.
|1977 Topps #5, Victory Leaders|
Jim Palmer's average season was 17-10 with a sub-3 ERA. You better believe that's a HOFer.
|1978 Topps #5, Pete Rose Record Breaker|
Little League baseball helmets have earflaps on both sides, so either lefties and righties can use them. As a kid, I assumed switch-hitters like Rose would also use them. Nope. As this picture demonstrates, MLB teams can afford two helmets, one for each side.
|1979 Topps #5, Victory Leaders|
Trivia: Ron Guidry and Willie Randolph captained the Yankees together from 1986-1988, the only time New York featured team co-captains.
|1980 Topps #5, Garry Templeton Highlight|
Another switch-hitting highlight! Always respected guys who can hit well from either side. It seems like a superpower.
Any other collectors who started buying packs in the 1970s? If so, what's the first card or player you remember picking up?
First card was 1974 Tommy John. Card #451.
I'm proud to say I have all those #5s, except for Brinkman (although now I'm not sure about the Guidry-Perry. Will have to look in the morning ...)
Cool! Might have an extra Brinkman around, too...
The first card I remember really trying to get was 1973 Rick Stelmaszek, because his wife was our teacher. Sadly, I didn't get that year's card until years later.1
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