Saturday, October 28, 2017

Oversized in My Collection: 1984 Donruss All-Stars

I've decided to start a new series for the next several Saturdays, featuring oversized cards from my collection.  It should only last a few weeks.  To start, though, we're looking at the 1984 Donruss All-Stars.   I only have 5 of these in my collection, so I'll show them all.
1984 Donruss All-Star Eddie Murray.
My understanding is that Eddie Murray was recognized as the Orioles' next great slugger early in his career.  Boog Powell left the Orioles after the 1974 season, and Lee May was near the end of his career when Murray started, so they needed a young power hitter.  In the 1979 World Series, Lee May only had one at-bat, while Eddie Murray played the whole series.  Murray's career-high was 33 homers in a season, but he hit them so consistently over so many years, he ended with 504, joining only Hank Aaron and Willie Mays as members of the 3000-hit/500-home run club at the time.
1984 Donruss All-Star Harold Baines.
Harold Baines and Eddie Murray are both two of the players I'm working on deeper player collections for.  I'm not sure if these cards really count, since I consider those collections to live in a binder, and these won't fit.  Baines was doing well in 1983 with 20 home runs and 99 RBI, following his 1982 season of 25 home runs and 105 RBI.  He didn't make the All-Star team until 1985 (the first of 6 times), though, despite this being an All-Stars set.  Most of the All-Star sets aren't too literal about it, I guess.
Back of 1984 Donruss All-Stars Eddie Murray.
Back of 1984 Donruss All-Stars Harold Baines.
Sportflics and Score both get a lot of credit for having full-color pictures on the backs of the cards.  These 1984 Donruss All-Star cards did it before them, though.
1984 Donruss All-Stars Buddy Bell.
I have a number of cards of Buddy Bell from sets like this.  I'll post the similar 1981 Topps Super of him in a few weeks.  I started paying close attention to baseball in 1987, when Bell was near the end of his career -- he last played in 1989; so, I didn't have much opportunity to actually see him play.  But I remember him as a frequent All-Star and a good hitter.  He finished his career with 2,514 hits.  I also remember they always talked about how his dad was former major-leaguer Gus Bell, who played 1950-1964.
1984 Donruss All-Stars Gary Redus.
I remember Gary Redus for being a Pirate during their early-1990s postseason run.  Redus was never an All-Star; in 1983, he finished 4th in the NL Rookie of the Year voting.  I guess that's why they included him?  He batted .247 with 51 RBI in 1983.
1984 Donruss All-Stars Andre Thornton.
I don't remember Andre Thornton, but he was an All-Star with the Indians in 1982 and 1984, and won a Silver Slugger in 1984.  Thornton played in the majors from 1973-1987 with the Cubs, Expos, and Indians, hitting a total of 253 home runs.  He once won the Roberto Clemente Award, is in the Indians Hall of Fame, and is in the Reading Phillies Hall of Fame.  I caught a game at Reading earlier this year and had a great time -- I'll try to go back next year and see if I find his name in a Hall of Fame display.

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