Baseball cards were evolving as well. Just that year was the introduction of the "superpremium" sets (could you imagine a SRP of $4.99 per pack?). This was before the strike and inserts were all the rage. I heard a 1992 Fleer Team Leader Frank Thomas was a pretty good card to own, but everyone wanted a refractor (if you could find them) to get caught on the wave...of the future.
Here's the first of a 4 part series, trying to recall memorable players and faces from the 1993 season built around the breaking of a 1994 Flair Series 1 box.
John Olerud: Memorable Season The chase for .400 was on! He finished at only .363, but he ended up leading the league in AVG, OBP, OPS, OPS+, doubles, and intentional walks. He also had a 114/65 BB ratio and a career-high 24 HR. And he was at .400 on August 2!
Paul Molitor: Memorable Series: He had a great season (2nd in the MVP voting), but he took home World Series MVP honors by hitting .500/.571/1.000 in the 6 games and tied the World Series record with 12 hits.
Juan Gonzalez- Memorable Season: Led the league in HRs with 46 and .SLG with .632. He also won the home run derby before it was popular with a mind shattering 7.
Dennis Eckersley-Forgettable Season: The defending AL MVP and Cy Young award had 10 blown saves and a 4.16 ERA. His WHIP increased 30% from the previous year.
Darren Daulton Memorable Season: Had 2nd straight 100 RBI season and had 135 OPS+ as Phillies won the division title for the first time in 10 years (also hit 2 HRs on my birthday)
Mike Piazza Memorable Season: Easily won the NL Rookie of the Year award with a very impressive .318/.370/.561 season (152 OPS+) with 35 HR and 112 RBI. Anyone seen his 1992 Fleer Update card yet?
Solomon Torres Forgettable Moment: Started and lost the final game of the season in which the Giants were left out of the playoffs with 103 wins.
Barry Bonds Outfield Power Insert:The power of cash, 6 years, $43 million and an MVP award.
Chan Ho Park Wave of the Future Insert: The first Korean player was signed before the 1994 season. He is still playing today.
Other notable cards from these packs (based on photo and/or player): Kevin Appier, Kirby Puckett (2x), Bryan Harvey, Scott Servais, Kevin Stocker, Ozzie Smith, Steve Karsay Wave of the Future.
If you want to see these cards or any others, let me know.
And yes, I did get both Pucketts in the same pack.