Sunday, May 16, 2021

One card only - Gypsy gold from 2012

I had been feeling a little bit down recently but my mood was lifted last week when two fellow collectors contacted me separately on the same day to each show me a card and ask if I would like it. One of those people was Laura, the t-shirt designer who created the .394 t-shirt I am wearing in my bio pic to the right there (if you are looking at the web version of this rather than the mobile version!) 

Laura has created a few Padres-themed t-shirts, including a "Slam Diego" design, which I was wearing on Wednesday to watch the first game in the Padres' double-header against the Rockies, when Victor Caratini hit a grand slam! You can check out more of Laura's designs here.

Card Number 675: Topps Gypsy Queen gold frame parallel, 2012; #252

This card is numbered 252, like the base card, but there were actually only 100 cards given the 'gold frame' treatment.

I had wanted this card for a while because I wanted to talk about Topps re-using images on cards. I knew this card set used the image that had appeared on Tony's Topps card from 1988.

The Gypsy Queen version has been sharpened in photoshop, but the equipment in the dug-out and the people in the crowd are the same. 

I'd like to be able to claim that I spotted this all by myself, but actually it's because I saw the card designs next to each other in an image of an auction lot on eBay. I 'borrowed' that image as a reference and have kept it for several months waiting for the opportunity to use it.

That picture shows what the regular base card looks like. This is a 'gold frame' parallel, which means there is literally a gold card frame stuck on the front of the card in a decoupage style. It's hard to see on the scan but that gives the card added depth and makes a real nice effect.

Based on my research, I think the framed versions were included in the 'value packs' which contained 3 packs of Gypsy Queen cards and 3 framed parallels. The gold were the most common framed card. There were also blue-framed cards serially numbered to 599 cards, and black-framed cards that were released in a print run of one card each (known as 1/1s).

There were lots of variations in this set as well, so there are two variants of Tony's base card and two variants of the 'mini' version of his card. There don't seem to be any variants of the framed cards on Trading Card Database, but even so that adds up to a lot of different versions of this card for collectors to tray and track down. It's also a good illustration of the 'bloat' that has happened in terms of total cards released for a given player. 

The back of the card is sllightly dull in comparison. At least it wasn't complete gibberish like the cardback the previous year.

"He paced the NL..." is an odd phrase. Maybe the cardback writer felt "led" was a bit too boring a word to use on a boring cardback.

And now an added bonus. I said I had been feeling a bit despondent recently. When I opened the envelope and took the card out there was a little post-it note on it with a cheerful message. It really made my day!

I hope that however this blog post finds you, you find the time to look for rainbows when it rains.

Total: 675 cards


  1. It's amazing how 2.5" x 3.5" pieces of cardboard can raise our spirits. I know they have helped me plenty of times over the years.

    P.S. Laura has designed some pretty cool shirts.

    1. Yep. Acts of cardboard kindness can mean quite a lot.