Saturday, July 3, 2010

A nod to Night Owl's Insert Mania

The one and only Night Owl recently wrote a nice post about the awful word play used on some inserts. He should know. With his background in the newspaper industry, he spends more time with the written word than the common person and his blog is one of the best in the business. He's funny when he wants to be and can make just about any card worth reading about when he puts pen to paper....or fingers to keyboard.

His post got me thinking. I spent entirely too much money on cards between 1998-2002. If you don't believe me, read this post. As a result, I saw many of the terrible inserts Night Owl mentioned and I went through some of my cards from that time to see if I could add to his list.

These are a few examples of the terrible inserts that came out of a time of way too many sets and not enough rational thinking.

In no particular order:

We'll lead off with a trio of bad inserts from Skybox.

2000 Skybox Metal: Heavy Metal
I may be alone in this, but I don't get it. I do get that it was Skybox Metal, but the card is neither heavy, nor made of metal. Maybe if Big Mac was using a Metal Bat. Maybe. But, probably not. I will say this. It's not as bad as #1 on Night Owl's list...Boyz with the Wood. That was a stinker.

1999 Skybox Premium: Live Bats
There were a few inserts of this era where the back of the card is written as if the manufacturer is talking to the player. It's a litte awkward and so is the font used for "Live Bats". Is this supposed to be a play on the term "live ball", which is used when a pitcher seems to be getting good action on his pitches?

1999 Skybox Premium: Soul of the Game
I'm just a bit too young to have participated in the disco era, which is where this insert belongs. Or maybe in a Mike Myers shag-a-delic movie. The big "Skybox Premium" box under Jeter's name is just poorly placed. It looks like an afterthought.

2000 Fleer Tradition: Ten 4
This insert comes from the same set as #2 on Night Owl's list. I don't get it at all. Ten 4? Even with "Hall's Well", the #2 already mentioned, I get the Hall of Fame connection. What is the relation of Ten 4 to cards? This one reminds me more of the "Planet Maris" homerun call when Mac broke the Maris record. That was dumb too.

2000 Fleer Tradition: Grasskickers
Really? Let's create an insert for a product that is supposed to be for kids (right) and call it Grasskickers. And while we're at it, let's find the worst picture of Derek Jeter for the card.

Now, before I go, let's look at two more. The difference is, I like these.

2000 Upper Deck: Big League Beat
I'd like to know your thoughts about this insert. Personally, I like it. Maybe that's because I still like to read the sports page from a real live, get ink on your fingers, newspaper.

Hey, it looks like a real newspaper, complete with an advertisement.

1999 Topps: Hands of Gold
My opinion of die-cut cards has always been mixed. Some I like. Some I don't. These I like very much. It is somewhat reminiscent of a glove and has raised surfaces. It's a perfect insert to celebrat Gold Gloves.

The back of the card shows the years the player won a Gold Glove along with their fielding stats for those years. Finally an insert that makes sense and has a real asset to feature. I featured these inserts of Omar Vizquel and Ivan Rodriguez in a previous post about Gold Gloves.

Thanks to Night Owl and everyone else who is blogging. Your posts always make me think and sometimes even inspire a post.

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