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Few things fuel a sense of nostalgia like opening a box of 1987 Topps

  • Two packs into my box of 1987 Topps, ordered online in a moment of nostalgic indulgence, the memories were rushing back faster than Vince Coleman used to steal second base.The smell of the gum was unmistakable, even though these pink slices of formerly chewy goodness were 27 years old, brittle and partially fused to the backs of these cardboard relics. The rush of seeing “Future Stars” plastered across the front of special rookie cards was still very real, even though I now know Tim Pyznarski never really became a star for the Padres, and Pat Dodson never lived up to the promise I believed in because the back of his card told me he hit .417 in 12 at-bats for the Red Sox in 1986.MORE: Take SN's 1987 Topps Real or Fake Fun Facts quiz A few more packs in, I remembered the sequencing issues that used to frustrated me to no end. In this particular box, every time I saw a Steve Garvey, I knew Andy Van Slyke, Bryan Clutterbuck and Mike Smithson were next in line. As a kid, on those occasions when I saved enough allowance to buy a full 36-pack box at .40 cents a pack, the anticipation of unveiling each card was exhilarating. Knowing what cards were coming next, especially if they were all commons and/or I only had a few packs left, was so very disappointing.As a kid, I opened each pack slowly, reading every word and every number on the backs of every card. These were my 11-year-old self’s Baseball-Reference, and I devoured the information. I memorized the stats, and found[......]

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