Monday, June 24, 2019

The Worst Card Ever Made (A Contest Entry)

This past year, baseball card collectors witnessed firsthand the worst card ever produced. It's not the worst because of the card itself, really. The design is simple and not overdone. The photograph, while lacking action, does show a clear close up. It's not some lowly journeyman reliever who will be forgotten over time. In fact, it depicts a young MLB superstar during the potentially greatest moment of his young career.

An argument could be made that this card is bad because it was only available online, and for a price much higher than a modern baseball card really should go for.

But it is a memorabilia card! That would help justify the cost some, right? There's just something special about owning a swatch of jersey or a splinter of bat from your favorite player. This however...

2019 Topps Now - Sping Training #ST-1F Manny Machado (MEM, SN1)

That's right folks, I'm talking about Topps' ultimate money grab, the famous tablecloth relic from Manny Machado's press conference. For those of us who appreciate the business side of baseball more than the game itself, is a card highlighting Manny's required presser after he signed with San Diego for the meager sum of half of San Diego.

Topps, ever the innovator, felt that fans should have a sense that they were there among the journalists and suits. They've already done the club uniform routine before, so what else could they use? In a true eureka moment, some Topps peon hung around until after everyone left and grabbed the tablecloth. That tablecloth ($15.29 at Wal-Mart) would bring in hundreds, possibly thousands of dollars! Genius!

The worst thing? People bought it. Topps made their money, and then some. Good grief, someone actually paid $800 for the SN1 parallel! $800! Why would someone spend that much on a tablecloth relic when they could get 160,000 cards from the glorious 1988 Donruss set for the same price?

Now Topps knows the truth - no relic is too ridiculous! Ladies and Gentlemen, we've opened up a Pandora's box for Topps. I can just see it now....Topps, like a carnival barker with megaphone in hand, announcing the future of baseball cards:

New from Topps: "Relics From History!" - An exclusive online only set of cards featuring one-of-a-kind relics from baseball's brightest stars!
  • Who wants a napkin relic from Ronald Acuna Jr? We're pretty sure he ate at the same Subway store we got it from!
  • Justin Verlander's 3-year-old nephew drew a picture of a cow - we ripped that bad boy up and made it into a card. Get them while they last!
  • Do you want a popcorn bag from the movie theater where where Aaron Judge sat and watched "Fifty Shades Of Grey?" It's yours!
  • Mike Trout rode to the stadium in an Uber car and we cut up the seatbelt! Hurry supplies are limited!
  • How about a pillowcase from a hotel Mookie Betts once slept in? We can't be sure if he used it, but who cares?
  • They said we couldn't do it, but we did! For the next 24 hours, we proudly offer this one of a kind relic of a Post-It note Bryce Harper used to write down his next hair appointment! Only $799.99!
See what I mean? The possibilities are endless! Gum from the bottom of Buster Posey's shoe! A blade of grass that Christian Yelich's dog peed on! The corner of an envelope offering low credit card rates to Vladamir Guererro Jr! If it has even the slightest connection to an athlete, it's a candidate for an upcoming relic! ToppsNow - giving you what you want, for a price!


This post is the first of hopefully many entries for a contest hosted by Daniel at It's Like Having My Own Card Shop. Interested in winning some awesome cards? Check out his post here!


  1. It would be in the running for a pretty bad card, but since it depicts my most-hated player, it's just that much worse.

  2. I've been making mock customs just like these. Some great ideas.

    Latest one is here:

    1. Those are great! Feel free to use any of my ideas for your next mock-up!

  3. I'd totally be down for that Trout-used seatbelt relic.

  4. It's a super lame card... but as a Padres fan... I've gotta admit... I want one.

  5. Thanks for entering my contest. I loathe this card and yet would still buy it if it was $5 or less.