Sunday, May 1, 2016

Nostalgic Box Break: 1998 Collector's Choice Series One (Part Two)

We're a third of the way through this box, and I figure we should knock out the next 12 packs while I have some time to breathe. With one more look at focused Hall of Famer Ken Griffey, we move ahead.

 Pack 13- You can see the Canseco card we ran into in the very first pack.

 Here's a nice double play shot by Jose Valentin, and a landscape of a young Shannon Stewart.

 Two guys that did a lot better than those two. Randy Johnson, in his last season as a Mariner, and Larry Walker in a StickUms insert.

 Also, here's a shot of Brad Radke throwing 'em down.

 Our Starquest here is a still-pretty-good Juan Gonzalez.

 Pack 14- Once again, I am reminded how insert-based this set is.

 Here's some irony. The guy on the left was a part of the Mets' 2000 World Series team. The guy on the right was a part of the Mets' 2015 World Series team.

 A pretty nice base-running shot of Jeff Frye.

 In 1998, everybody would be murdering people to get this card, a rookie card of Ben Grieve. Man, how times have changed.

 Two guys that would end up with World Series rings by the end of the year.

 Annnnd another stickums, of Mike Piazza.

 Our StarQuest is, who else, the cover boy, Ken Griffey Jr. I will say I like these StarQuests better than I like the newer ones, because they include more of a background, and the tiers are more obvious.

 Pack 15- Man, another Griffey and another Piazza. It's like this box KNEW who'd be going into the Hall 18 years later.

 The 90's- a decade where someone like Mickey Tettleton could get a Final Tribute, and someone like Shane Reynolds could lead a rotation for half a decade.

 Piazza in another awesome StarQuest, and the MOOSE in a Cover Glory.


 Pack 16- No sign of Griffey or Piazza yet...

 Two team legends. Pedro's a hero in Montreal, or Boston. Grace is a hero on the North Side of Chicago.

 More evidence that Tino Martinez was ruling the world in 1997.

 Pack 17- A ton more inserts here, and a double of a card we just got.

 I'd say that Jamie looks young here,'s Jamie Moyer. I don't think he ever looked too young.

 One of the last great multiple-exposure shots on record. This one featuring Eduardo Perez.

 Two guys who won a World Series in 1995. One had moved onto Cleveland, the other was staying where he was. And the latter is the one in the Hall of Fame.

And also, here's another Larry Walker.

 Now HERE'S a rookie card that's actually aged pretty well.

 Pack 18- This is officially the halfway point in this box. Just FYI

 Fun fact- UD meant this as a Final Tribute, but Dennis Martinez would hold out for one more season, as a member of the Atlanta Braves. Persistent little guy.

 Two guys who won World Series titles right after each other.

 Wow, weren't we just talking about the guy on the left? Also, here's Mike Cameron as a White Sock, pre-Griffey trade.
 See, here's a guy who actually retired when he said he would.
(Remembers 1994 season)
Oh, wait...

 Pack 19- Not a ton we haven't seen before here.

 Our inserts were the only highlights- Cal Ripken on a Starquest and Albert Belle in a throwback.

 Pack 20- A bit more going on here, comparatively.
 Man, Juan Encarnacion warranted a StarQuest? Wow. Also, here's Joe Carter, right before he was traded to Baltimore.

 Had no idea Charlie O'Brien was still playing in '97, but here he is in a great catcher shot.

 A very poignant Final Tribute, this one of Fernando Valenzuela, who finished up with the Cardinals in 1997.

 Another guy who went onto be huge after 1998, Todd Helton. Hoping he's as much of a Hall of Famer as I think he is.

 Pack 21- Another groovy StarQuest parallel awaits.

 More proof that Carlos Hernandez was awesome-cardboard-magnetic.

 Manny rounding the bases, and Ryno on a StickUms. Not sure if Manny's a Hall of Famer, though.

 And here's a Starquest of Raul Mondesi, pre-Toronto-trade.

 A TWO-STAR PARALLEL of HOF-ER Paul Molitor. That's pretty nice.

 Pack 22- Wow, a pack that's LIGHT on the inserts????

 Matt "Can't get up the" Stairs, in a rare running shot.

 Two breathtaking pieces of cardboard. The Ripken's just an amazingly posed shot, but Buhner is SITTING ON A TRACTOR! THAT IS SO COOL!

 Pack 23- The inserts strike back.

 More fun with vehicles- Jaret Wright is driving a golf cart! This set is insane!

 Another camera shot, this one from Willie Adams.

 Annnnd another shot of Raul, signing some autographs.

 Two StarQuests whose stars sort of died out after a little while. Morris did have some nice years with St. Louis, though.

 While we're here, here's a card of Inexplicable Home Run Hitter Richie Sexson.

 Pack 24- 2/3rds marker.
 Jason Schmidt, pre-fame.
And Dave Magadan, post-fame.

And we wrap things up with a StarQuest of Cardinals hero Ray Lankford.

That's quite enough for one day. I'll post the last third sometime soon.

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