Wax True Baseball Card Story: The Commons

Purgatory or the box of commons?

Imagine a career that landed you close to 220 wins and almost 2,400 K’s. Now, how about being an all-star, leading the league in complete games, games started, innings pitched, not to mention having almost 120 complete games in your career? Now that is something to marvel at, no? Well, if the guy’s name is Charlie Hough, odds are his cards are sitting somewhere in your box of commons as we speak.

I am not knocking the guy because obviously, the man was a successful, great pitcher. The point is that all I can remember as a young baseball card collector in 1993 was seeing him in a teal, wrinkled, Marlins uniform. He looked like the grandfather I never had and there was absolutely nothing “cool” about him. For the rest of my collecting days his cards gathered dust next to other guys who didn’t even deserve to have a baseball card produced! Ah, such is the life inside the box of commons. We all have one and each and every collector has a Charlie Hough in there. For me in 2007 it was Randy Johnson.

Who lurks your box of commons?



  1. Frank Tanana is another pitcher like Hough, He had a very long, solid, above average career where he racked up a ton of strikeouts and wins and absolutely no one knows who the hell he is anymore. I think I have at least three of every one of his Topps cards as well. I’m a Tanana magnet.

  2. I got a lot of Von Hayes and Matt Williams. Here’s a good question, will Wakefield be the next Hough. Also do you think at some point we will see another long termer knuckleballer?

  3. Anyone who had an all-star card or made an all-star team at some point in their career was in my “stars” shoebox as a kid: Hough, Hayes, Ozzie Virgil, Steve Bedrosian, Jesse Orosco. All of them ended up in the commons pile before I stopped collecting though.

  4. Hough never pitched for the White Sox! Off the top of my head, he pitched for the Dodgers, Rangers, and Marlins.

  5. I have a video commons box called R.B.I. Baseball on the original NES system!!
    Yes I still have that system and all of the RBI games–here are some players that were pretty big in their day but just faded into oblivion after they retired or whatever they did..
    Andy VanSlyke, Kevin Maas, Kelly Gruber, Steve Sax, Bobby Thigpen, The Alomar brothers, Kevin Mitchell, and the list goes on.
    Those common cards though, are a wonderful trip back in time to baseball’s glory days or a least the days when baseball was still fun, and collecting was centered around just pulling a card of your favorite player or players from your favorite team-back then even commons weren’t really commons, every card seemed to have it’s place within your collection.
    The hobby has really gotten out of hand, now even Albert Pujols and Derek Jeter can be found in the new era “commons boxes” if they don’t have an auto or a low number on them.

  6. There is a website for everything!!
    Since nobody finds the glamor in playing 8 bit video games anymore, I find myself playing RBI alone which is cool because I 12 run the computer team like a pro every time.
    Since I usually have a Vodka Cran while playing, my drinking game while playing RBI is simple yet VERY effective-Every homerun-Take a drink. Jose Canseco hits a homerun-Take 3 drinks and finally, every defensive play that warrants a replay-Take a drink. And of course there is the 7th inning chug-if the game gets that far!
    Oh yes, my life is as exiting as it seems!!

  7. I appreciate the 8-Bit. I’m a Tecmo Bowl aficionado myself. You can find it online in a couple of places and every so often I’ll just have to sit down and play a season.

  8. I just got finished playing RBI baseball and a half game of Blades of Steel.
    I would have played more Blades of Steel if I hadn’t done so well at RBI baseball–Drinky, Drinky!!!

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