The Legend of Gary Scott and Jay Johnstone's Headwear

Monday marked a first in the One Million Cubs Project. It was my first mailday that was packaged in a Sock Monkey box. Points for style.

Inside, Adam from California sent 325 Cubs cards. A unique Ryne Sandberg awaited at the bottom of the box. How cool is this?! A framed 80’s oddball Sandberg along with a piece of jersey and baseball.

This was made by Vintage Sports Cards in Conroe, Texas. It also has it’s own tripod on the back to display on a shelf, which is exactly what I’m going to do.

Another oddball I’d never seen before was this Sammy Sosa from 2003 Fleer. It’s plastic like a credit card, and the same size. The card is two-sided showing a diving Sosa on the front…

And his backside on the reverse.

Adam packed some 2018 Cubs inside, and three really nice additions that are new to my collection. The first is the retail exclusive Anthony Rizzo decal retail exclusive. These retail exclusives were packed inside the Wal-Mart boxes, while the yellow transogram cards came in the Target boxes. I did buy two Wal-Mart blasters and pulled a Rhys Hoskins and Manny Machado (I moved them on eBay).

Ian Happ is off to a miserable start this season, but this 1983 Topps 35th Anniversary insert is sweet. This is one of my favorite sets of all-time. There is no personal connection for my liking this release from Topps. I just always loved the circular picture in the corner. For some reason 1984 Topps’ square corner photos just didn’t strike my fancy as much as the 83’s.

Willson Contreras is one of my five keepers in my fantasy baseball league (other four that I carried over from last year: Francisco Lindor, George Springer, Stephen Strasburg, and Adam Jones.) I only bought three Gypsy Queen blasters this year and pulled five different Cubs cards, but not the Willy C.

Mentioned before in this space is my dislike for the too much white bordered 2013 Topps cards. The white space drives me as crazy as the yellow 1991 Fleer cards. However, I really enjoy the colored parallels. Here’s some green Rizzo gold cup action.

The spring of 1991 was Gary Scott’s time. The third base prospect was the next big thing. He was expected to finally be a stalwart at the hot corner for the Cubs, something the team had not had any consistency since Ron Santo. The 1990 Cubs Minor League Player of the Year took Major League Baseball by storm in March 1991. Scott hit .366 during Spring Training, but less than six months later he had fizzled out. On August 10, 1991, Jim Donaghy of the Associated Press wrote:

“Gary Scott was pegged as the best third baseman to wear a Chicago Cubs uniform since Ron Santo. It turned out he couldn’t even beat out Luis Salazar.” OUCH!

Horizontal cards are not among my favorites, though some really stand out for me. This 2003 Ultra When It Was a Game Ernie Banks is a beauty. It has the double border with wood grain on the interior border, with yellow Ernie Banks script and the Cubs logo placed to the left of a young fielding Ernie Banks.

Not as aesthetically pleasing is the 1984 Fleer Jay Johnstone. But look at that Budweiser umbrella hat. Johnstone had retired by the time I was starting to watch baseball in the late 1980’s, but I do remember him hosting blooper videos. I had one of them on VHS and watched it so much I can still vividly remember a segment with Tommy LaSorda talking about Mickey Hatcher.

Thanks for the trade, Adam. In return, I sent a box of Seattle Mariners cards.

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