Monday, July 17, 2017

if you'd like to make a call, please hang up and try again

just like many other things, prepaid phone cards dabbled in the collectibles market as a way to expand the customer base.  i am actually surprised that retailers don't do similar things with their gift cards. anyway, i recently picked up a couple of steve garvey phone cards that i did not know existed until i saw them for sale on ebay and comc.

the first one is from mci and is actually a 1995 promo.

the garv was one of many former big leaguers who partnered with mci as part of their ambassadors of baseball program to visit military bases across the country.  many of you know that there were actual baseball cards produced to hand out at these visits.  garvey has a card in the 1992 set, but it was my search for his 1995 card that led me to this item.  i'm still looking for his 1995 card, by the way.  since this is a promo, there is no code on the back, and i do not know if these were even produced as actual phone cards.  it came with a set of other promo cards - i'll assume they were 'salesman samples' that feature a number of other topics such as nascar, the smithsonian, etc. no other baseball players though.

the second phone card i purchased is this 1994 teletrading card
that features a robert barros lithograph commemorating garvey's 1984 nlcs walk-off home run against lee smith and the cubs.  this one is a legitimate phone card with the code still hidden.  of course, it expired in 1995 so i won't be calling home on garvey's dime.

i also picked up a stamp, but i can't use it to communicate with anyone, either.  some heroic comc seller pulled apart their 1992 trak auto dodger all-stars stamp sheet and listed the stamps for sale individually.
i jumped at the chance to have the garvey/reggie smith stamp sitting solo in my garvey collection.  i had been looking for a loose stamp for a long time, and had considered on a couple of occasions buying another full sheet to separate, but now there is no need.

and, while i am on a 'at long last' train of thought, here's a 2002 upper deck sweet spot classics garvey gold relic card
that i recently purchased.  garvey had two relic cards in this set, so i still 'need' the other one in gold parallel form. they were pretty pricey when they first hit the market 15 years ago, so i took a pass until now.  if my memory serves, the rest of the photo used on the card has thurman munson running up the line in the 1978 world series.  i recently picked up another garvey item that has a tie to munson, but i'll save it for a different post.


  1. you seem to like this Garvey fella.....

    1. yeah, it's a bit out of hand these days.

  2. That lithographic phone card is a beauty of an oddball; but, I can't say I'm a huge fan of the event depicted :P

    1. i'm sure lee smith feels like he doesn't really need to be part of the artwork

  3. That $10 phone card is beautiful! This took place right before I became a Padres fan... but I still remember that highlight like it was yesterday. At the time I felt bad for Smith.