Last night, the Baseball Hall of Fame announced that Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Piazza would be inducted this summer as the Class of 2016.
Griffey set a new record, appearing on 437 of the 440 ballots cast. (The old record was held by Tom Seaver – our first Mets representative in Cooperstown – who received 98.84 percent of the vote in 1992.)
It took four years, but Piazza finally crossed the 75 percent threshold in this year’s election. And while I can’t figure out how a man who’s been retired from baseball since 2007 managed to do anything that “made him a Hall of Famer” since the last election, I’d rather celebrate the voters getting something right.
I love oddball baseball items, and these New York Mets “stamps” produced in 1996 by Chris Martin Enterprises fit the bill. Released a few years before self-adhesive stamps became popular with the United States Postal Service, these collectible “stamps” should really be classed as stickers in my opinion.
The Mets were represented by Todd Hundley, Jose Vizcaino, Jeff Kent, Rico Brogna and Bobby Jones. According to the checklist on the back, each of baseball’s 28 teams had its own sheet of five players. (The Phillies’ chosen five were Jim Eisenreich,Gregg Jefferies, Mickey Morandini, Paul Quantrill and Darren Daulton. The selected Yankees were Wade Boggs, Jimmy Key,Paul O’Neill, David Cone and Bernie Williams.)
For $5 or 10 proof of purchase seals, you could join the Pro Stamps Club and receive “a cool membership card, team stamp poster (8.5×11), newsletter and information on how to order other NFL, NHL and NBA team Pro Stamps sets.”
I bought a few 2008 Topps Allen & Ginter cards to send out in the mail earlier this summer. So far, I’ve gotten about half of them back, but the best success to date is the Jeff Kent card I got back yesterday.
Kent typically returns most of his fan mail after the season, but seems to be getting an early start on it this year while he is injured.