1990 Score Baseball Cards

1990 Score Baseball -Part 2- Best Card In The Box

It may be one of the least valued sets from the initial junk wax era, but the 1990 Score baseball card series does have a few decent cards.  In my opinion this set has 3 great cards that would be up for the title of “best card in the box.”

Most of the time, the best card would simply be the highest valued card in the release.  Pretty simple.  Highest valued usually means the most in demand card, aka, the best card.  Well, I’m going to venture in to the slightly controversial realm, and apply a more unconventional approach to determine what I consider to be the number 1 card of set.

Right off the bat, the easy answer would be to say that the Frank Thomas 1st Round Pick card is the top card.  Its definitely a solid card. The highest value of a card from the regular set for sure.  Still to this day it’s remembered, and still has a place circulating in the card market.  One of the top 50 cards from that mid ’80s to early ’90s era in my opinion.  But not the best card of the series.  Not for me.  Although I do have a couple crisp ones that are never leaving my collection.

1990 Score Frank Thomas

1990 Score Frank Thomas

Undoutedly a special card in the series, the Ryne Sandberg error card has a unique circumstance around it.  The 1990 Score baseball series has a number of error cards in it.  More than the number you normally see in a set.  But none of them are worth anything.  They were widely circulated in the mass produced products of the day.  Actually, the corrected versions of the error cards are the more valued of the pair, coming along after mass quantities of errors were produced.   The one card in the set that has the error version valued higher than its correct version is the Ryne Sandberg error card.  And it will still fetch a few dollars in an ungraded pack fresh condition.  Pretty much the highest valued card in the series.  But not “in the box.”  At least in the 3 boxes I’ve got.

So what’s the best card in the box then?  That’s an easy question to answer.  I don’t have to even think twice about it.  The best card in the box, is the Bo Jackson Football/Baseball black and white photo card.  This card was too big of a deal at the time it was live to not allow it to claim the top spot here today.  The photo was the cover of the book “Bo Knows Bo,” which was named after the unforgettable “Bo Knows” marketing campaign.  The photo on the card has also been featured on posters, t-shirts, a magazine cover, a Nike printed ads series, and in too many media publications to mention.

1990 Score Bo Jackson FB/BB

1990 Score Bo Jackson FB/BB

Consulting a copy of the September 1990 Beckett Baseball Card Monthly Magazine, we can make several interesting observations.  The Bo card has the highest listed price for all non error cards of 1990 at the time.  The magazine lists it at a high end value of $12.  The 1990 Upper Deck Ben McDonald error card has a listed value of $32.  The before mentioned 1990 Score Ryne Sandberg error card has the same listed value of $12 at the time also.

In the 1990 magazine we also find that in all of ’89 there is only 1 non error card beating it in value at the time.  That would be the 1989 Upper Deck Ken Griffey Jr. rookie card.  Upper Deck has an ’89 Pat Sheriden error listed at $35.  They also have the Dale Murphy error at $105 in the 1989 series.  In 1989 we also see the Fleer Billy Ripken situation cards ranging in listed value anywhere from $16 – $40 at the time.

My 87 book and 90 Monthly

My 1987 Book and 1990 Monthly

We also find that in all of the 1988 cards in the 1990 publication, the only one with a higher listed value is the ’88 Score Traded Mark Grace card at $30

According to the magazine, the Bo card was at the time the highest valued non error card of that year.  We also can see that at the time, it ties for the fifth most valued, non error, regular series release cards from 1987 – 1990.  The card also has the 9th highest listed value in 1990 of all cards overall from 1987 – 1990 including sub releases, error cards, and variants.

Today, the ungraded card has little value.  Prices have shifted to have other cards from that time period fill those spots of value today.  So many cards of that time period now out weigh the value of the Bo card.  It really doesn’t even show up as mid level card in value for that time period anymore.  It’s more of an inflated common in price.  I still love this card though. And It will always be one of my favorites of that time period.

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