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1970s Baseball Cards

By Patrick Mondout

Welcome to our look at the baseball cards of the Super70s! We've got pages for all the major sets of the decade (and the Awesome80s too) as well as a few dozen complete checklists. Use the links on the left (under the green heading "Baseball Cards") to get started.

I purchased my first baseball cards in the Super70s and the cards from this decade will always mean far more to me than the '52 Topps, 1933 Goudy, or T206 cards ever will. The decade was once again dominated by Topps, who enjoyed a near monopoly on current player cards (as SSPC found it when it tried to produce a set in 1976). They produced some memorable sets, including the 1971 set that featured black borders on the fronts. These cards are very, very difficult to find in mint condition because of those borders and the set is very popular with collectors. Many would agree that it was the set of the decade (though I will always prefer '78 Topps for strictly personal reasons).

Two sets that it was hard to be on the fence about were the '72 and '75 Topps sets. Both were extremely colorful and both had their critics for exactly that reason. The Super70s were a colorful decade as shown in the fashions. Even most Major League adopted more modern uniforms (which purists always hated but I always loved - even the Astros) and I'm glad these trends were reflected in at least two the major sets of baseball cards.

One player whose cards were unfairly neglected during the Super70s and most of the Awesome80s was fireballer Nolan Ryan. That may seem hard to believe now with virtually everything with his image on it carrying ridiculous price tags, but baseball card collectors were not the least bit interested in his cards, save his rookie card. Even that was undervalued for a guy whose strikeout numbers were unprecedented and who would likely end up in the Hall of Fame. Ryan simply wasn't well liked and most people thought Steve Carlton (who was a much better pitcher, if a difficult person) would finish with the strikeout record and more victories.

If you want to know more about the history of baseball cards, check out our article on the Fleer/Topps legal battles. It includes a brief history of the hobby.



Images courtesy of Topps

'70 Sets!
'70 Singles!
'70 Unopened Packs!
'70 Lots!
'70 Cases!

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