In the box of baseball collectibles I got at the church bazaar a few weeks ago were 16 54-card rack packs of 1988 Score. That's 864 cards. I already had 200 so I thought, even though I don't care for this set that much, I should be able to assemble a complete set from this. No such luck. With three packs to go I only had 537 of the 660 cards in the set. The next two packs were dry, no new cards. Then I got 13 new ones from the last pack to end up at 550, 110 short. I don't think I'll be making any effort to complete the set. I got just about every player that I collect from the set.
Going through all these cards, however, made me appreciate this set a bit more. I started collecting in 1985 and I was pretty much a Topps snob in those days. 1988 was the first year from Score and I'm pretty sure I didn't buy any new packs. The cards I had came in repack boxes. I can't say that I like the borders too much. The set is arranged in 110-card blocks of color. The first 110 cards are purple, followed by blue, red, green and yellow (or mustard perhaps). The photography, however, is pretty good.This George Brett card is probably my favorite card. I like cards featuring a swinging batter with a ball in the shot. This one is great because you can see George's face and his concentration.
Nothing special about the Mike Schmidt card, except that it's Mike Schmidt.
One thing I like about a lot of the photographs is how they are framed. This Dwight Evans card is an example. A full body shot with three points touching the border, his right foot, his hands and the top of the bat.
Here's a similar shot of a pitcher. I also like this one because the color in the frame goes well with the color of the frame.
Did Gary Carter use an especially long bat. Sure looks like it from this shot.
Another good job of framing. Ruffin's body leans to the right of the frame but his arm draws your attention across the photo to the ball on the left.
Here's Kirk Gibson running out of the frame, hopefully after getting a hit.
Another interestingly framed shot.
The set certainly has it's share of boring shots, but almost every card features an action shot, there are very few posed pictures. And in most cases, the photos are sharp and bright. The wrapper says "Photography Quality Printing".
Another thing that struck me was the number of future Hall Of Famers who were playing in 1988. I may not have got them all but here's who I saw in this set: Wade Boggs, George Brett, Ozzie Smith, Rickey Henderson (in the set but actually retired in 1987), Jim Rice, Mike Schmidt, Eddie Murray, Kirby Puckett, Ryan Sandberg, Dave Winfield, Dennis Eckersley, Robin Yount, Gary Carter, Paul Molitor, Tony Gwynn, Reggie Jackson, Nolan Ryan, Carlton Fisk, and Cal Ripken. And, perhaps still potential HOFers, Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire and Roger Clemens.