It’s strange when you think about it. Out of all the great rookie cards from the 80’s that hit three figures, it’s an error card that perhaps will be forever cherished in the minds of collectors.
Sure, Clemens, Ripken Jr., Canseco and a few others carried The Hobby on their shoulders at times, but no other card created such buzz as did the 1989 Fleer Bill Ripken error card.
Today this card is truly a forgotten treasure to many collectors, especially those who missed out on the 80’s. However, this card and its dozen versions will live forever on the website BillRipken.com, which has more information on the card than you could ever imagine.
On the secondary market, you can find this card for about $5 dollars, which is not so bad when you think about it. That’s about $4 more dollars than the rookie card of a man who hit nearly 450 more home runs than Billy, won the Most Valuable Player award unanimously, and created a prestigious “club” that only has three other members.
More on that player next time on Forgotten Treasures.
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It’s been almost twenty years since the infamous 1989 Fleer Bill Ripken “error” card hit the market. Finally, the most famous baseball brother this side of Ozzie Canseco has commented on the card and has thrown a large accusation towards Fleer (LINK), now owned by Upper Deck and no longer producing baseball cards.
“I mean, they certainly have to have enough proofreaders to see it. I think not only did they see it, they enhanced it. That writing on that bat is way too clear. I don’t write that neat.”
So is Fleer responsible for one of the first and greatest “gimmick” cards of all-time? We will likely discover who shot J.F.K before we learn the inner workings of a card company so don’t hold your breath. Now, the card once valued at hundreds of dollars can be had for very little so if you’ve ever dreamed of owning one rush out to eBay and make a bid or two.
This 1989 Fleer lacks a piece of a game-used relic, certified autograph or any other one of today’s popular vices but still ruled the Hobby for years, along other 80’s icons like the ’86 Donruss Jose Canseco and the ’89 Upper Deck Ken Griffey Jr. rookie card.
As a card blogger, I am ashamed not to own a copy.
I never really bought into the whole “error card” craze of the 80’s & 90’s. I just didn’t see the point in paying hundreds of dollars because Topps forgot to add Frank Thomas’ name on the front of the card or cause Billy Ripken wrote his brother’s nickname on the barrel of his bat. Still, this ’97 Pinnacle Certified is one sick, mutant baseball card.
On the front of the card you have 75% Craig Biggio, 25% some unknown player. On the back and upside down is the back of Shannon Stewart’s card. Considering the 25% on the front is most likely not Shannon, you are looking at a baseball card with three different players on it.
I might even throw it up on eBay for fun with a “OMG 1 of 1 SUPER RARE ERROR CARD” as the title to see if I can lure a few big spenders with too much cash to blow. Otherwise, I’ll just hold on to it until some Biggio/Mystery Player/Stewart Super Collector contacts me for a trade.