04 October 2011

Dave Winfield - Travelling Man (Part 3)

       Having renewed his value on the free agent market, after the 1991 season, Winfield headed north, and took his talents to Canada where he played a big role in a hugely talented 1992 Toronto Blue Jays team. As mentioned in an earlier post, it was with the Blue Jays that Dave finally picked up his World Series ring. However, despite having a great season with the Jays, Winfield became just another of those high profile hired guns, spending just the one season, winning the gold, and moving on to greener ($$$) pastures.

     With a new team, came another appearance in the year's update sets.  Donruss took a different approach than all the other companies, and rather than issue their update cards as a standalone boxed set, or as another series, they instead included them in specially marked 1992 factory sets.  But they didn't include the whole update set in the box, they just included four cards from the 22-card set in each box.  To help confuse matters for collectors, Donruss issued at least three different factory sets in 1992.  There was the blue box that included a few 1992 Studio preview cards.  There was a red box, sponsored by Coca-Cola (I think it included the 1992 Donruss Coca-Cola set), and there was another red box with a special sticker on the shrink wrap indicating the presense of the 1992 Donruss Update cards.

     So here you are, at the end of the 1992 season, you've already busted countless packs of 1992 Donruss.  Stacks of the blue & white cards scattered around or in sorting boxes.  And since your favorite player was traded, you know there's at least one more card to get.  But to do so, if you can't find anyone selling the singles (good luck!) you basically have to go buy "packs" of 792 (+4) cards in hopes of catching the ONE card you are looking for.   It is no wonder that the 1992 Donruss Update cards are some of the most difficult to find for collectors.

     Due to the nature of how this set was distributed, price guides hugely undervalue these cards.  It took me 3 sets to find this one.  The first set I picked up was in a blue box, because I didn't know any better.  After that wasted $10, I did a little more research to figure out what I should have been looking for.  My second set, another $12, in the proper red box, unforunately did not contain a Winfield.  I did get the McGwire, however.

     I quickly put those four cards on Sporlots, and between them, made back $10 of the $12 I had spent on the set.  That still left me with another complete 1992 Donruss set.  Sure they're much better quality than all previous years, but still, Leaf let the presses run, so there is no shortage of these and I already had several hundred cards from opening packs years ago.  In the last three years, I've managed to sell a whopping FOUR cards from this set on Sportlots.

     Thankfully, set #3 landed me the card you see above.  And another 792 useless 1992 Donruss cards.  So all told, the card above probably cost me something like $25.  And to this day, I have still never seen another.  I'm sure there are still thousands of them buried in unsold, unopened and unwanted 1992 Donruss factory sets.  A bit of maybe useful information, the UPC code on the red box sets is 0 10700 82149 2.  The much more common blue sets are 0 10700 82150 8.

     Fleer, thankfully, took the more sensible approach to issuing their update set, and as they had been doing since 1984, as a boxed set.  Much easier to find, much cheaper to pick up.

     Score and Topps did the same, which resulted in my finding the rest of Dave's traded/update cards for around $1 altogether.  Not a bad deal.  I didn't include Upper Deck's 1992 offering because they issued their cards slightly later than Donruss and Score and managed to sneak him into their Series 2 that year in his new duds.

Since the Jays had only signed him for a year, it was only a matter of time before Winfield made yet another appearance in another year of late season update sets.


  1. Any chance you've come across another Winfield donruss update since your post? I'm trying to complete a full set of jays from 77 to 93. I'm five cards shy and this one is proving to be difficult to find. Email me at ieross@rogers.com if you've got a tip.

  2. I have not. I basically put 1992 Donruss in my rear-view mirror once I landed my copy. I've still never seen a single popup anywhere.