Monday, March 12, 2018

1990 Topps Minis #1: Jeff Ballard

I stated in my New Year's Day post that I would be stepping down from posting every day, but now, just a few months later, I'm back to seven posts a week, at least for the next few months.  My regular posting schedule was going to be Sunday-Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday, but then I added Friday posts for team sets from the 1990 Donruss Best of the National League set which I recently bought.  Having looked through all the mini cards I have, I've now decided to post all of the cards from the 1990 Topps Mini League Leaders set, in one card per post, on Mondays and Wednesdays.  There are 88 cards in the set, so this will take the next 44 weeks to complete.
Jeff Ballard.
So, let's get on with it.  The cards are featured alphabetically by team, starting with the AL teams.  So the Baltimore Orioles go first.  Players from each team are also included alphabetically, so first among the Orioles is pitcher Jeff Ballard.  Ballard pitched for the Orioles from 1987 through 1991, and then for the Pirates in 1993 and 1994.  He compiled a career record of 41-53 with a 4.71 ERA and 2 saves.
Jeff Ballard card back.
Ballard is honored in the set for placing #5 in the AL in wins with 18.  He went 18-8 with a 3.43 ERA in 1989, in what was really his only good season in the majors.  The only other year he had a winning record was 1993, when he went 4-1 primarily as a reliever.

Up next (on Wednesday): Phil Bradley, also of the Orioles.  Thanks for reading!


  1. I loved the mini league leaders cards as a kid. I need to pick up the 1987 set for nostalgia. I even remember how the cards smelled different than other cards when you opened the packs.

    1. I always liked the minis, too.
      Judging by how many I have, it looks like I bought a couple of boxes of the 1986, and at least one box of the 1990. I have a handful of 87, 88, and 89, too.

  2. I always loved these too. Glossy finish, white cardstock, and full-color backs were special in those years before all the premium stuff took over. I also always found it interesting how Topps would incorporate that faded edge design into the flagship design each year.