The former Player's Association executive director is featured on card NF-9, part of the issue's "News Flashbacks" subset, according to the set checklist on CardboardConnection.com. The Miller cards are currently selling for $1-2 eBay and between $0.30 and $1.50 on Beckett.com.
Interesting side note for collectors of Jews in Hollywood memorabilia and Trekkies: the set also includes a Star Trek card (NF-3) picturing MOTs William Shatner and Leonard Nemoy.
Marvin Miller 1994 Upper Deck card.
Miller has been featured on several cards over the years. His cards include the 1994 Upper Deck "American Epic" set, a 2005 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites issue, cards with Donald Fehr and Michael Weiner the 2007 and 2010 Jewish Major Leaguers series, and a 2010 Topps Allen & Ginter issue.
I've just ordered the new Miller card, and am excited to add it to the other baseball labor leaders and executives portion of my Jewish baseball collection. Will you be buying Miller's new pasteboard? What memorabilia featuring the union head do you have in your Jewish baseball collection?
With the sheer volume of cards released every year, it can be tough for Jewish baseball card collectors to know what Jewish Major Leaguers have cards in newly issued sets.
Today, I was pleased to learn about the 2015 Topps Heritage cards featuring Hall of Famer pitcher Sandy Koufax.
According to CardboardConnection.com, the set includes a 15-card "A Legend Retires" subset. Cards are numbered SK-1 through SK-15. They are available exclusively in product sold at Walmart. A search on Walmart.com shows no product available. As such, I'm assuming the cards are available only in card packs purchased in-store.
The checklist for the Koufax special inserts is as follows:
SK-1 Sandy Notches Shutout at 19
SK-2 Teenage Whitewash
SK-4 Koufax Proves He Belongs
SK-5 Sandy Isn't Rusty
SK-6 18 Go Down on Strikes
SK-7 Matty's Mark Falls
SK-8 Mets' Can't Muster a Hit
SK-9 Sandy Slays the Giants
SK-10 Sandy Pitches L.A. to Title
SK-11 Practically Perfect in Philly
SK-12 Absolute Perfection
SK-13 Koufax Sets Season K Mark
SK-14 Twins Tamed by Koufax
SK-15 One for the Ages
The Walmart inserts are selling for a few dollars a piece, and in lots with prices exceeding $10 a group, on eBay.
In addition to the "Legend Reitres" subset, Koufax is featured on nearly a dozen other cards that are part of the 2015 Topps Heritage product. These include:
Card BF-10 Sandy Koufax - Los Angeles Dodgers, the last in the 10-card "Baseball Flashbacks" inserts.
ROA-SK Sandy Koufax - Los Angeles Dodgers, a "Real One Autographs" card. The limited edition redemption cards are going for $800 or more on eBay!
Five different "Then & Now" cards, pairing the Hall of Fame lefty with current pitchers Clayton Kershaw (TAN-6 and TAN-8), David Price (TAN-7 and TAN-9) and Adam Wainwright (TAN-10). These cards are interesting, but only Kershaw belongs in the same breath as Koufax, let alone the same cardboard, in my opinion.
Do you have any of the 2015 Topps Heritage Sandy Koufax cards in your Jewish baseball collection? Will you be going to Walmart (or eBay) to buy any? Do you have any to sell or trade?
Let fellow Jewish baseball card collectors know by commenting below.
Larry Sherry Topps card. Photo courtesy of eBay.com.
JewishSportsCollectibles.com offers reviews of the players' baseball cards and collectibles ... which range from common cards to $100,000+ game-used leather, from books to DVDs, from postcards and programs to books by the yard.
Steve Yeager Upper Deck card. Photo courtesy of Beckett.com.
To read the JSC's overviews of the cards and memorabilia for World Series MVP winners Larry Sherry (1959), Sandy Koufax (1963 and 1965) and Steve Yeager (1981) click on the players' names.
Feel free to comment below, or in the individual postings, to let JewishSportsCollectibles.com readers know what your most treasured collectible for these World Series winners might be.
The most notable, however, of Robinson's Jewish opponents was Hank Greenberg.
Robinson faced Greenberg during Robinson's 1947 rookie season and Greenberg's last season as a player.
Pee Wee Reese puts an arm around Jackie Robinson in 42. Photo courtesy of IMDB.com.
A touching scene in 42 shows Dodger captain Pee Wee Reese placing an arm around Robinson on May 13, 1947 at Crosley Field in Cincinnati, comforting Robinson while fans hurled racial epitaphs. The tear-jerking scene is given the full Hollywood treatment, and is a high point of the movie. According to ESPN.com, however, it may not have happened as depicted in the film.
What happened on May 15, when Brooklyn played against Pittsburgh -- Greenberg's team -- that year is clear.
"The most dramatic
display of Jewish solidarity with Jackie Robinson came from Hank
Greenberg. The legendary Detroit Tiger slugger who hit 58 home runs in 1938, then
with the Pittsburgh Pirates in his last season, was the first opposing player to
offer Robinson encouragement. Probably no major leaguer before Robinson
had been more abused by opposing players and fans than Greenberg, who was
continually taunted for being Jewish.
"On May 15, 1947,
in a game between the Pirates and the Dodgers, Robinson laid down a
perfect bunt and streaked down the line to first. The pitcher’s
throw pulled first
baseman Greenberg off the bag. Reaching for the throw, he collided with Robinson, who
was able to get up and reach second. The next inning Greenberg walked,
and asked Robinson, who was playing first base, if he had been hurt in the
collision. Assured by Robinson that he hadn’t been, Greenberg said to him, 'Don’t pay any attention to these guys who are trying to make it
hard for you. Stick in
there ... . I hope you and I can get together for a talk. There are a few things I’ve
learned down through the years that might help you and make it easier.'"
Despite wide coverage of the episode at the time it took place -- Robinson old the New York Times, “Class tells. It sticks out all over Mr. Greenberg.” -- the conversation between Robinson and Greenberg is given scant attention by Robinson's biographers.
Hank Greenberg: The Story of My Life. Photo courtesy of Amazon.com.
"Here were our guys, a bunch of ignorant, stupid Southerners who couldn't speak properly ... and all they could do was make jokes about Jackie. The couldn't recognize that they had a special person in front of them. ... I identified with Jackie Robinson. I had feelings for him because they had treated me the same way. Not as bad, but they made remarks about my being a sheenie and a Jew all the time."
Hank Greenberg: The Hero of Heroes. Photo courtesy of Amazon.com.
As of the time of this posting, no Beckett Marketplace seller is offering the card. Prices, when collectors can find the Fleer cards on eBay or Amazon, range from $10-$100 or more, depending on the scarcity of the particular issue.
While potentitally difficult and costly to obtain, the Robinson pants/Greenberg bat variation (which saw a limited production of just 50 cards) would represent a jewel in the crown of any Jewish baseball card collector, in my opinion.
The only problem with the card is that it depicts Greenberg in his Detroit Tigers uniform. Greenberg, of course, played for the Pirates when he faced Robinson, and for the Tigers for years prior to Robinson's major league debut. As such, Greenberg as a Tiger was never a "rival" of Robinson's.
Even with this historical inaccuracy, I think the card is a terrific addition to any Jewish baseball collection.
Hank Greenberg Jackie Robinson JML card. Photo courtesy of JSC.
The Jewish Major Leaguers card is much more accessible to buyers who don't have deep pockets.
Card #50 in the 2008 "Hank Greenberg 75th Anniversary Edition of the JML series, titled "An Encounter," can be found on Amazon
At the time of this posting, no Beckett Marketplace or eBay sellers were offering the 2008 JML card.
42, American Jews and America's Game: Voices of a Growing Legacy in Baseball, Going to Bat for Jackie Robinson: The Jewish Role in Breaking Baseball's Color Line, Hammerin' Hank Greenberg, Hank Greenberg, Hank Greenberg: The Hero of Heroes, Hank Greenberg: The Hero Who Didn't Want to Be One, Hank Greenberg: The Story of My Life, Jackie Robinson, Jewish baseball, Jewish Major Leaguers in Their Own Words, JewishSportsCollectibles.com, Jews And Baseball, Jews and Baseball: An American Love Story, Life And Times of Hank Greenberg, Pee Wee Reese, The Baseball Talmud, The Big Book of Jewish Baseball, Two Pioneers: How Hank Greenberg and Jackie Robinson Transformed Baseball - and America, When Jackie and Hank Met
With the recent release of 42, the movie detailing Jackie Robinson's breaking of the Major League Baseball's "color line" in modern era (April 15 marked the 66th anniversary of Robinson's 1947 debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers), I've been thinking a great deal about Robinson, whom I've long admired for his courage and grace.
The connections between Jackie Robinson and the Jewish people, are broader, deeper and more intimate than I knew when I started my research for this series of postings.