I've since been keeping an eye out for more cool "one-of-a-kind" items that Topps is cleaning out of their old file cabinets. Everything seems to start with an opening bid of $9.95. And if an item ends with no bids, it'll usually get reposted as a Buy-It-Now at that price.
I found a couple such things from top-tier "guys I collect" player collections of mine and jumped on them both to save a little on shipping.
First, here's another Dick Allen item. I might not be a full-blown supercollector of Mr. Allen, but now I've got a couple truly unique items, at least.
1982 Topps Kmart 20th Anniversary Baseball Mask Negative.
Per the auction's page, this is:
"an original 4-color mask film negative. Color separation mask film negatives were used in the set's printing and proofing process. This auction features the YELLOW tone example. Four different colors: red, blue, black and yellow are used in this process. Although this production item is B&W in color, it rendered the YELLOW tones in the finished card. This rather unique collectible measures the standard 2 1/2" X 3 1/2" and overall, is in excellent condition."While I've never been a huge fan of those original Kmart cards or the original 1972 Topps Rich Allen card (the lazy lie that it is), somehow this "black bordered" negative just looks super bad-ass. The black & white makes it look more like a contemporary White Sox card, instead of all the red that the team inexplicably used heavily in their color scheme for a brief while. Honestly, Dick Allen's 1972 Topps card has never looked better! This negative has managed to somehow redeem the card. So yeah, I'm very happy to give this "card" a home in my collection.
The next item I've got to show off is an addition to my Bill Madlock PC.
1982 Topps Baseball Card Color Negative.
This a photo Topps owned but never got around to using on a baseball card. The auction's page explains it's from...
a random selection of vintage color negatives hand-picked from the legendary Topps photo archives. All of these classic images were shot by official Topps photographers but, for reasons unknown, failed to make the cut, and thus, never appeared on a vintage Topps trading card. The original color transparency offered here measures approx. 2 1/2" X 3" and is in excellent condition.Here's what the picture looks like when it's been processed (via Topps):
That's a swell posed shot of Mad Dog, cracking a little smile with his lumber during his Championship-winning tenure in Pittsburgh. I like it. And while it might not technically be a 1/1 baseball card, it essentially fits the bill for me. (Bill Madlock, that is.) A bit of a weird streak down the left side, but I don't mind. Perhaps that's why it didn't sell during its initial auction (and maybe why it was never used on a baseball card?). If I ever turn this into an unlicensed custom card of my own, I'll have to either fix that in photoshop or crop around it. Or perhaps work it into the design somehow? As for now, this item will be lovingly tucked away with my other Madlock cards.
Thanks, Topps! Good stuff.
I'm kicking myself for not bidding high enough on a similar unused Nate Colbert negative (what kind of super collector am I?!! For shame. I renounce my supercollecting ways, with my head hung low) and a Rod Beck contract (the closest thing to a certified auto he has! DAMNNNNNN) But yeah, thanks.