Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Take a peek at my Teke

I didn't have a post idea in mind for today, but this morning I saw on Twitter that it's Kent Tekulve's birthday, so I decided to whip out my Teke PC. Snapping these photos caused me to be a few minutes late for work, but damn it, Teke comes first! He's an inspiration, becoming a world-class athlete while being a funny-looking, bespectacled stringbean.

Kicking things off above is the only "1/1" type item I've got from him, a 1980 Topps "4 Color Film Positive" card I picked up from the Topps Vault back in 2017.

As far as his Topps flagship goes, I've got all his cards from the 70s, but missing some from the mid 80s. I didn't bother plucking any cards out of complete sets for this post. So while I technically own a 1982 Topps Teke (not to be confused with Topps Tek), it's in my complete set. While going through the PC, turns out I had a dupe '78 that I needed for that setbuild, so that was nice. (and oh wait, I didn't notice at first but the '81 is OPC, not Topps.)

Some more Topps miscellany. The turned-over '88 Topps is a "blank front" printing error. The other pair of top cards are box bottoms (Re: the '89.. I've just learned that he didn't make it into Topps' standard 792 that year, yet has a box bottom plus is in the Traded set). Lower row is '87 OPC, 2001 Archives (funny they count 1988 as his final card, ignoring the '89 Traded [or the box bottom for that matter.. oh man, how great would it be if Topps reprinted a box bottom card?! LOL, can't recall that ever happening. I would also be amused to see a box bottom buyback, but as far as I can tell, there aren't any such cards out there]), and 2003 Retired.

Slim pickin's from Donruss and Fleer. I could have dug up a few more had I raided sets.

"Kent Tekulve oddball" is almost redundant. Great cards here, with a 1976 SSPC rookie card, 1989 Kahn's (the only card besides his '89 Topps Traded featuring him in his sunset stint with the Reds [though there is also a 1990 Publications International Trivia Sticker out there]), and 1994 Carolina League 50th Anniversary All-Time Greats.

And a grand finale of autographs. Six certified on-card autos, plus a couple TTM/IP on the right. I hadn't realized until now that his 2015 Archies card (in the 1980 Topps design) used the same photo as his '85 Topps card. Lazy Topps.

So there's my Kent Tekulve player collection. Happy 72nd, Teke!

Still a long way to go to reach my standard PC goal of 100 different cards. It might be tough since according to TCDB, he only has 166 listed, and many of those are low-numbered parallels and buyback autos. But I should at least round up his remaining mainstream/flagship cards before too long. Trades welcomed.

UPDATE: not too long after posting this, I added  '87 Donruss, '88 Fleer, '88 and '89 Score, '86 and '87 Topps.

Thanks for reading!


  1. Fantastic! Happy Birthday to a legend!

  2. Nice Teke collection! Grew up mimicking his side arm release.

  3. How in the world did Tekulve get a box bottom but not a standard card in 1989 Topps? That's just so strange. I suppose they pulled him out of the set when the Phillies released him, but it's still weird that they had time to change the base set but not the box.

    I'd love for Topps never to reprint anything ever again, but a box bottom buyback would be awesome.

    1. Well, the '89 box bottom is essentially a "highlight" card, with the back featuring a write-up about how he pitched in his 1000th big league game (just the 2nd ever to do that, after Hoyt Wilhelm, and the 1st to do it with zero starts among his appearances). I suppose it was nice of them to give him a shoutout for that via bottom of a wax box, even if they didn't feel it was a big enough deal to give him a real highlight card in the set.

  4. I"ve probably got some of those mid-80's Teke's. I'll take a look.

  5. That Kahn's Teke has been on my white whale list for a while. He just looks so weird as a Red (well, weirder than usual, at least!).

  6. Fantastic post. I met Teke a few times and he was just as odd looking in his late 60s as he was when he was pitching for the Pirates, Phillies, and Reds.

  7. I never thought about it either, but if I ever encounter a box bottom buyback I'm snatching it right up!