Friday, March 29, 2013

Blast from the Past - Earl Cunningham

Yesterday, my post on Shawon Dunston contained a small part about his original 1990 Topps card. As I've been scanning in more and more cards, I am flooded with memories of collecting from this era. I was a military brat living in Germany at this time so my access to cards wasn't very good. Because of that, I think the 1990 Topps set was the first factory set my parents bought for me. Previously, my sets had all been hand collated from packs and trades and picking up singles at card shows.

When this set was brand new, I was torn about this Earl Cunningham card. It was technically a Cubs card, but there was no Cubs uniform or even logo. Just the word Cubs and a photo of Cunningham in his high school uniform. I'm not sure I can even give him props for the stirrups because that was the style back then. Much more so than today anyway.

He was the Cubs first round draft pick (8th overall) in 1989 but as an 11-12 year old, I didn't see the point in drafting him. The Cubs would go on to have the ROY and ROY runner-up that season, both outfielders. Granted hindsight is 20/20 and neither Jerome Walton or Dwight Smith would go on to replicate that season but Andre Dawson was also the third outfielder. I thought the Cubs outfield was locked up for years to come!

Now Score on the other hand seemed to know what they were doing that year. Here we have Cunningham actually in a Cubs uniform. Logo on the hat. Logo in the corner. And Cunningham is even sporting some Cubs bling around his neck!

Not to mention another full color photo on the back of the card. Who does Score they think are, Upper Deck?!? Here's the back of the Topps card for comparison.

Along with these two cards, Cunningham had several Bowman issues despite never rising above the high Single-A level with either the Cubs or later, the Angels and Rockies. I'm pretty sure I have some Bowman too but I haven't gotten around to scanning them yet.

1 comment:

  1. Don't forget, Score had color photos a year before Upper Deck. I think tend to forget that just because Upper Deck lasted much longer than Score. 1988 Score is one of my favorite sets of all time though.