Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Running through the 1988 Star set part 1

In the large parcel of cards that Richard sent me was an 11 card oddball set made by Star. As a card producer, Star normally stuck with minor league sets. In 1988 they issued 28 different sets related to minor leagues or minor league teams - everything from the Carolina League All-Stars to the Tampa Tarpons. If someone wants a Miami Marlins set from before the Miami Marlins became a Major League franchise, then there is a Star set of the minor league outfit from 1988.

Star also produced player-specific sets, with 29 different small sets released in 1988 alongside their minor league cards. Typically these sets had 11 cards in, with some players getting more than one set. Mark McGwire had three sets in 1988. Tony had one solo set and another set that he shared with Wade Boggs, both of them getting five cards each in the latter set.

According to Trading Card Database, this set was limited to a print run of 5000, with a glossy parallel set limited to 1000 of each card. I don't know if the set Richard sent me is the regular set or the glossy parallel. I suspect the regular because it doesn't seem very glossy. There were also 500 autogaphed versions of the first card in the set available - all serial numbered. This might have been one of the first time Tony's autographed cards were made available to collectors in a set.

Anyway, let's kick on and enjoy some shonky oddballness. I'm going to split the cards over the next couple of posts as well. 

Card Number 843: Star Tony Gwynn "Padre Hitman", 1988; #1

A couple of things to be aware of as we go through this set. Firstly, I think most of the photos were taken during the same game. Secondly, the production levels aren't high. These were sort of licensed cards but that's a home-drawn San Diego logo on the front. 

Spoilers! This first card in the series is a checklist. Have a read to anticipate what's coming up.

Also, even though this says Star '88 on the front and it's confirmed by TCDb as being released in 1988... nobody at Star bothered to update the copyright notice from whenever they last used this card template. It still says 1984.

Card Number 844: Star Tony Gwynn "Padre Hitman", 1988; #2

The series kicks off with a series of stats cards. Tony's minor league stats get profiled first.

I am reasonably certain they could have written 'Pacific Coast' next to Hawaii and Las Vegas. Often Tony's 17 games in Las Vegas in 1983 get forgotten. He was recovering from an injury and spent a few weeks getting back to full game fitness.

Card Number 845: Star Tony Gwynn "Padre Hitman", 1988; #3

I can see why Star would print this photo in landscape orientation. The catcher's hand reaching in forlornly just as Tony makes contact with the ball makes this image. However, not switching the template around so the fake logo is sideways is lackadaiscal design.

Even though this set was released in 1988, it only shows Tony's major league stats up to the 1986 season.

Card Number 846: Star Tony Gwynn "Padre Hitman", 1988; #4

Batting donut picture! Time to check Fuji's post of a dozen Tony Gwynn cards with batting donuts... and this one isn't one of Fuji's dozen! 

Tony had one season's worth of post-season stats to go on this card.

And on that statistically spartan note... I will bid you adieu. More of the set tomorrow.

Total: 846 cards

1 comment:

  1. I remember going to card stores and shows in the 90s and passing on these. They always looked like a custom bootleg. Now that I am older, wiser and can afford more then my weekly allowance on cards I have these in my collection. I still feel the same way about these set as I did in the 90s.