The Vagabond Binder!
It focuses on players who changed teams a lot in their careers. One page per player. To be eligible, a player must have been with at least 7 MLB teams. Of course 9 is ideal, so you can have a card for each team. But guys with 7 or 8 teams can find filler cards with minor league or foreign leagues, senior league, coaching/manager cards, etc. Zero Year cards definitely count (such as Jose Canseco on the Expos and Angels). Custom cards are allowed if there's no readily available card of the guy in a particular uniform.
So with the parameters understood, let's kick off with a guy who played for exactly 9 MLB clubs (plus some double-dipping), the great Rickey Henderson.
Nine cards, nine teams! This is an ideal page for the Vagabond Binder.
Some collectors might frown on the same design popping up twice on the same page, but not me! Honestly I don't have many Yankees cards in my Rickey PC, so I didn't have much choice. And the '89 Topps Traded is one of my favorite A's cards of his (plus I had a dupe of it, which is a good since I'm pulling these cards out of the PC for the binder). But yeah, I think this is an appealing pairing of cards. Yes, Rickey's original stint in Oakland isn't represented, but I'm ok with how it turned out. If I someday end up with a 3rd rookie card (one for the set, one for the PC, and one left over), I could see it bumping out the '89TT. (Currently I only have one RC, residing in my 1980 Topps complete set.)
The Blue Jays card has me conflicted. On one hand, it's the only card on the page featuring Rickey doing his thing on the basepaths, but on the other hand, it's horizontal so it kinda upsets the feng shui of the page. But this was the only Blue Jays card in my Rickey PC, believe it or not, so it gets the call.. at least for now; I reserve the right to make adjustments to the Vagabond Binder as I see fit. Rickey got his 2nd WS ring with Toronto in '93, with his leadoff walk setting up Joe Carter's walk-off in the 9th inning of the deciding Game 6.
As a native San Diegan, my personal favorite Rickey is Padres Rickey. This card doesn't look great in the scan, but it's a good looking card in person. Then you got the Angels and Mets. I believe there were some brief returns to Oakland mixed in there, but for our purposes, the A's have already been accounted for.
Easy for fans to forget about his stints with the Mariners and Red Sox. But the binder's got 'em!
And finally, Rickey wrapped up his MLB career in Dodger blue. Looks good on 2003 Topps.
He still hung around the game after that, playing with the Newark Bears and San Diego Surf Dawgs. Had I needed to fill another pocket or two, I could have been open to cards from those stints. But the page is filled, so we're good.
And that'll do it for this entry. I plan to make this a recurring blog series and induct another player into the Vagabond Binder soon in a forthcoming post.
Thanks for reading!