Monday, January 15, 2018

Custom or Not A Custom

Time to play America's fastest growing quiz sensation Custom or Not A Custom!

Don Mattingly made his MLB debut in 1982, but the Big 3 card companies didn't bother including him in their 1983 sets. But in this day and age, cardboard wrongs can be righted, and there's a nice trio of what could have been.

Did you guess right? The Topps card is NOT a custom, it's a Topps Archives card. I made the Fleer and Donruss cards.

More Yankees Captains, now with Derek Jeter. This is an easy one: The custom here is the 1991 Line Drive-style card. I thought it looked good with that early photo.

The Donruss cards come from 2004 Donruss Originals. Panini should revive that brand, like as their version of Topps Archives. Current Donruss products pay homage to old Donruss sets with new-but-similar designs, but rarely come right out and use old designs unless maybe for inserts.

Zero-year Vlad sunset card that never was. Yep, it's a custom.

I'm still a little upset the Jays declined to call him up in 2012 despite his success in the minors, effectively ending his career. He could have easily played for 2 or 3 more years, and possibly gotten to 500 HR and 3000 hits.

The "Originals" gives this one away: Not a custom. Kirby's first mainstream card was 1984 Fleer Update. This "What If? card imagines what it might look like had Donruss also put out an Update-type set that year.

My Kirby PC has definitely made good strides over the past few months, and this eBay pickup is one of my favorite cards in the collection.

More Donruss Originals. Got these in my recent COMC order. I just love these "What If?" cards. What if Donruss put out a set in 1980? Might have looked like that Winfield. What if Craig Biggio was in 1988 Donruss The Rookies? Might look like that.

Quick aside, but a few months ago Topps Bunt had some digital Cards That Never Were available. I thought that was super cool at first, but later grew very frustrated. They made the cards super hard to pull, first off. I drained my coin balance on packs hoping to pull one, coming up empty. Topps really needs to ease with the manufactured scarcity with their fucking digital cards! Obviously in real life you can't pull a Koufax or Hank Aaron auto in every blaster, but with fake cards, there's no reason to be so stingy with cool pulls like that. Come on, the whole point of digital cards is you could pull ANYTHING! How cool is that?! But no, Topps gives you 99% boring digital base cards. Add to that Bunt's move more and more into selling digital packs for "diamonds" that can only be obtained by paying real money... and I'm done with the app. Same with the Star Wars Card Trader app. Oh, another thing that sucks about those Cards That Never Were is they ripped off the blog of the same name. Even used the dude's font, but he wasn't involved at all. That seems like a dick move by Topps.

Last one for today.

Yep, it's a custom! Nate Colbert is one of my top guys I collect. I thought is was pretty cool when I came across this photo (even bought the original negative from the Topps Vault). I had never seen a pic of Colbert on the Jays. But as the blurb on the back of the custom states, he was with them in '77 spring training before retiring. So yeah, this is another year-zero sunset card that never was that I'm very happy I could bring into the world. (Seems like a lot of guys I like have their careers killed by Toronto. Vlad, Gavin Floyd, Mark Buehrle, and Nate Colbert. Oh well.)

That's all for today. Thanks for reading!


  1. Loved the Jeter custom my man! Awesome work!

  2. That Colbert Custom is cool!
    Actually, that Vlad is cool as well.. As a Jays collector, I really like them..

  3. Your custom work is incredible! Are they the same thickness as regular cards too? Do you take requests?

  4. That ‘13 Vlad is sweet! You should post some of your stuff on the FB Custom Cards Page I did a ‘12 Vlad Orioles custom, and it has nothing on yours.

  5. Pure awesomeness! You know your customs are legit when you can figure out which is which. My favorite is the Colbert. I've said this before on either your blog or someone elses... but it's a good thing I don't know how to make these, because if I did... I'd be spending all day creating the.

  6. Thanks for the kind words, guys!

    EP: My customs are a little thinner than standard cards, but not by too much. And yeah, if you've got an idea for a custom project you'd be interested in me working on, feel free to get in touch.

    Jeremya1um: Thanks! Cool.. I'll check that place out.