March 13, 2013

The Candy Trade

In 1989 John Candelaria began the year as a Yankee but then got traded to the Expos. Then sometime in the offseason, I guess, he signed with the Twins? If you happened to have a 1989 John Candelaria baseball card, you were probably like, "What the hell, bro? I can't keep up with all this." (You were probably not like though that because: who cares.)

In stepped Topps Traded. Say something happened like Scooter McSo-and-so got called up to the bigs, or some second baseman had a sex change operation and switched to third, or whatever with John Candelaria. Topps Traded would document those things in card form so that future scientists would know they really happened. Then, if you were a kid with like no money, you could buy this extra set and have all your wildest dreams come true.

Besides the up-to-the-nanosecond-three month accuracy, Topps Traded was also brighter than the regular year's stupid set. Because they only had to produce cards that reflected changes, Topps could afford to splurge on quality as it related to brightness. "You need to wear sunglasses when you look at these cards because the past is looking bright," is what a lot of people would say at the time. And was that brightness ever so beautiful! For example, check this out yourself before you wreck yourself:

               John Candelaria, 1990 Topps Traded
The brightness of the back of this card is exceeded only by the brightness of John Candelaria's smile on the front. I remember having this card and condescendingly asking my friends to see their John Candelaria '89 cards where he's on the Yankees. I'd be like, "Pfft. You know he switched teams, right? TWICE. Nice outdated card, brah. Look at outdated cards much? Also, this card is so dark. Did you pay for this?"

So yeah, not bragging or anything, but by 1990, thanks to my Topps Traded set, I had all my John Candelaria ducks in a row. Then he got traded to the Blue Jays and by '91 he was on the Dodgers? What the hell, bro? I can't keep up with all this.

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