Thursday, September 20, 2018

Baseball Cards in my favorite movies

As a card collector, it's always a little thrill when baseball cards make an appearance in a movie or TV show I'm watching, and if you're reading this blog, chances are you feel the same.

As far as I know, nobody has really put together a definitive list of cards in movies/tv. And this post definitely won't be definitive, but here are 3 of my all-time favorite films that also just so happen to feature cards for a brief moment.

First up is The Goonies.

Chester Copperpot was a card collector? Stumbling upon a beat-up old Lou Gehrig card might be exciting for Mikey here, but it's just a 1973 Topps base card of the all-time grand slam leader. In that condition, that card would likely be worth under a buck.

And yeah, I've mentioned that one before on the blog (this past St. Patrick's Day), but here are a couple others. Next up is Stand By Me. I recently whipped up a (digital) couple custom cards for the movie and shared them on Twitter.

Stand By Me takes place over Labor Day weekend, 1959. The film came out 27 years later in 1986. It's now been 32 years since it hit theaters. Crazy to think about! Here are a couple customs I made in the style of 1959 Topps subsets.

Somebody commented on the tweet that he remembered the older brother's room having some cards/memorabilia on the walls. I had been meaning to give it another watch, and sure enough, I paid close attention to to that scene and found some baseball stuff.

Looks to be a '58 Mantle all-star and the corner of a '60 Yogi (but hey now, the film takes place in 1959.. count that as a goof, I suppose.)

As a collector, it's a little painful to see a vintage Mantle with a pushpin in it. That would be a cool movie prop to own, though.

Among the '50s rock & roll bands is a photo of what seems to be a Yankees hurler. Looks like Whitey Ford to me, but couldn't say for sure.

Now here's an obscure one from The Sandlot.

Shoutout to Matthew Prigge for snapping these shots and tweeting them a few months ago asking if anyone could identify the mystery card.

With the tip that it was likely a Pacific Legends card, I went sleuthing and was pretty excited to track it down after several minutes of searching...

1989 Pacific Baseball Legends 2nd Series #205 Mel Harder. Not a name you hear much these days. He was a 4-time All-Star, but his career was finished before the Topps era. By the looks of the photo, it's from his coaching days. Not sure of any significance of the card's selection for the film, probably just an "old-looking" card that the prop master happened to have access too. Of course, it's another "goof", as the movie takes place in 1962, so a card from 1989 doesn't make sense. Ol' Mel was still kicking when the picture came out in 1993, as he lived to the ripe old age of 93, passing in 2002.

I watched The Sandlot again recently, keeping an eye out for more cards.

There are several other cards on the walls in the clubhouse. In this shot, looks like there are 4 cards from 1962 Topps visible, with the Lou Brock rookie in the lower right being the most identifiable.

And I hadn't noticed it before, but early on, when the step-dad is eating breakfast, there's a box of Post Sugar Crisp featuring 7 baseball cards ready to be cut out. Looks like 6 of these shouldn't be too hard to identify, with only one obscured. Anybody want to give it a shot? I've already picked out Maury Wills up top. Looks to be 1962 Post. I'm assuming this is a specially created prop, not a true vintage Post box, but I couldn't say for sure.

I actually started drafting this post at the beginning of the month, and it gave me the idea to create a big list of baseball cards in movies and tv. And so over these past 2-3 weeks, that's something I've been spending a lot of time on. The list is now up on a separate page on the blog, linked in the sidebar. Check it out: The List of Baseball Cards in Movies and TV

Let me know if you can think of anything I missed!


  1. Wow. That's one heck of a list. Great job! I'll definitely be referencing it in the future.

  2. Definitely love this post. Must keep it archived so it can be easily added to/amended.

  3. Here’s my shot at the 62 post . Under Wills Harvey Kuenn, Lindy Mc Daniel, Bobby Smith. Right hand row. Don’t know the top one, the one obscured is possibly Andy Carey, bottom Ken Hunt

  4. In The Sandlot, the character of Babe Ruth takes a copy of Hank Aaron's rookie card from Benny the Jet is visited by the Babe.

    1. I remember thinking, "Pretty cool that Babe Ruth took a Hank Aaron card." I wonder how many others caught the significance?

  5. In Needful Things, a boy buys a 50's era Mickey Mantle card from the evil shop owner for a cheap price and a promise to do the shopkeeper a couple of small favors. I think the card in question was a 1956 but it's been ages since I read the book. The scene is also in the movie.

  6. Great list, thank you for your efforts!

  7. I had to figure out the '62s, since no one took a crack at them. Here's my opinions (based on going thru COMC cards for 1962 Topps):

    The card by itself on the left side is John Orsino, It's a no brainer:

    The others on the right were a bit of a challenge. I'm certain the top one is Bill Henry from the Reds:

    We know the bottom is Lou Brock. But that middle was a challenge. I am 92.6673% sure, though, that you have the Rookie Cup card of Jack Curtis pinned above Lou:

    Hard to tell in the image, but I think the weird shading at the bottom is because of the yellow Topps cup off to the left side of the card.

    What did I win?

  8. Thanks, guys! And a special thumbs-up to Mark Hoyle and JediJeff for their card-detective work!

  9. What an awesome list! I had a couple in mind and they were on your list for sure.

  10. Fun stuff and I'll definitely be on the lookout for cards in movies. Thanks .