May 13, 2014

Happy belated birthday, Yogi -- now if only I could afford your Rookie Card

Marie and I have an awful running joke. Awful by me, she is the innocent in all this.

It started a couple of years ago when a former Yankee passed away. I made a comment on how Yogi Berra was probably next. Marie was horrified and claimed I was trying to kill off poor Yogi. I love Yogi. I would never do such a thing, but he’s getting up there in age.

Yesterday, I sent Marie and a text. “It’s Yogi Berra’s birthday.”

Her response: “He showed you!”

Berra turned 89. While my first thought was to text Marie, my second thought turned to his baseball cards – most notably his 1948 Bowman Rookie Card.

It’s such a simple card. A black and white photo with Berra on the backswing looking as though he’s tracking a ball. There are no words on the front of the photo and just the logo on the cap to show any discernible identifying marks.

It’s a card I would love to add to my collection. However, they do not come cheap – a couple of hundred dollars in poor condition.

So I am adding a new card to my baseball card bucket list. Right now, it’s only two cards long. When I get to at least five, I’ll make a post about it. But unless I hit the lotto, I don’t stand a chance of completing it. Did I mention the other card is a 1933 Goudey Lou Gehrig?

Interestingly, many older cards have been reprinted throughout the years. So, even if I can’t own a Berra 1948 Bowman RC, there is the option of getting a 2001 Bowman Heritage reprint. The biggest difference is the Bowman Heritage logo at the top right corner, but at least that allows collectors to know the difference without some unscrupulous dealers trying to pass off one as an original.

There are also 1989 Bowman Reprint Inserts featuring Berra and 10 others. The backs note a sweepstakes entry, so there is no confusion here either. These cards could easily be found in bargain bins and not worth a lot – but a cheap way to get replica Bowman cards. 

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