Wednesday, October 29, 2014

2004 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites #141 Joe Buck

Barring inclement weather or some other unforeseen development the 2014 baseball season will draw to a close this evening.

Fans of one team, either the Giants or the Royals, will be very happy. The fans of the other will be bummed
I will have mixed emotions as the season concludes. 
The Phillies fan in me will be glad to see it go, while the baseball fan in me will try and maintain the illusion of baseball by following the hotstove information and winter leagues.

Other fans will have their own sets of emotions. The changing of seasons, the passing of another year are all existential questions one may consider as another year concludes.

 I want to consider another less serious question:

What about folks that dislike this “Fan Favorite”?

2004 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites #141 Joe Buck

There is great irony in the above card. I have never heard Joe Buck referred to as a “Fan Favorite” or even a Favorite broadcaster. There is an incredible amount of dislike thrown his way – not sure why. Perhaps because he was paired with Timmy McCarver for so long, maybe because he is so ubiquitous – he is everywhere, or maybe because he is a legacy to the position and some folks feel like he is only a broadcaster because his father held the position so prominently. Everybody I talk to seems to feel that Buck is against their team – but he of course can’t be against all of the teams.

I have my own theory – his surname rhymes with a common expletive. It makes it really easy to scream vitriol at him.

2004 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites
I believe 2004 was the middle issue of a 3 year run of Topps All-Time Fan Favorites. The 150 card set contains cards of favorite players from the past plus a handful of cards dedicated to folks connected to the game such broadcasters like Joe Buck, Owners, Commissioners and Umpires. There are eight Phillies in the set include Mike Schmidt, Dick Allen Darren Daulton and Joe Buck's former broadcast partner Tim McCarver.

Each card is on a different Topps design - For Joe Buck we get to see 1998 Topps. 

Topps did a reasonable job of recreating their own 1998 product. The design is basically the same. The originals have a fade beyond the inner border of the photo - The above TFF card does not. The name box at the cards bottom features team colors. The flip (which we will speak to in a minute) specifies Buck as a Cardinal. Blue is obviously not the Cardinals Color - The only other card in 2004 TFF that features the 1998 design is of broadcaster Ernie Harwell who represents the Tigers - the blue box is more apt here and Topps may have used the same template when building the Buck card. 

Flip Side
2004 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites #141 Joe Buck (b-side)
Reading the flip side of Buck's TFF card we find him described as "A flawless professional". So either a lot of folks are in disagreement with Topps or being a flawless professional ins't what they are looking for in a broadcaster

Perhaps the St Louis Cardinals fans enjoy Joe Buck – they are his home town team and the team for which he did his first broadcasting. KC Royals may also see Buck as a local kid and be fond of the broadcaster. 

Regardless baseball fans that dislike Buck will not have to deal with him for a few months unless they are football fans, particularly if your football team is a top tier NFC team (Like the Philadelphia Eagles). In that case you will have about 3 months of Joe Buck football to look forward to.

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a thousand words

a thousand words
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