Sunday, October 20, 2019

Have it Your Way (with Baseball Cards)

Until a few months ago, I didn't know that Burger King ever issued baseball cards in panels like this. And when I saw this particular version on a trade partner's list, I had to grab it. 

1987 Burger King All-Pro Panel, cards #13 and 14


Well, I like oddball cards. But also, the guys you're looking at were two of my favorite players when I was a kid. I'll explain this way: 

The mitt I used for most of my Little League years was a Rawlings Ozzie Smith signature model. And my favorite bat? A Louisville Slugger Don Mattingly signature model. 

So, this Burger King panel spoke to me. It said, Have it your way. (With baseball cards. About 30 years later.)

Like many oddball sets, the quality of the design and photography can vary. However, I think this panel is better than average. Even with the team logos having been airbrushed from the player caps, I like it.

Here's the back:

Also better than average. Nice job on the write-ups, I say.

And here's the complete list of players in the 20-card set, by panel:

1-2  Wade Boggs / Gary Carter
3-4  Will Clark / Roger Clemens
5-6  Steve Garvey / Ron Darling
7-8  Pedro Guerrero / Von Hayes
9-10  Rickey Henderson / Keith Hernandez
11-12 Wally Joyner / Mike Krukow
13-14  Don Mattingly / Ozzie Smith
15-16  Tony Pena / Jim Rice
17-18  Ryne Sandberg / Mike Schmidt
19-20  Darryl Strawberry / Fernando Valenzuela

Mostly predictable choices, but some unexpected ones too. What I find interesting is that the cards almost run in alphabetical order. But not quite. If they had, Don Mattingly would have been paired with Tony Pena instead of Ozzie Smith. So, due to a clerical error it seems (or maybe removing a player at the 11th hour and replacing him with another?), two of my childhood favorites appear on the same panel. Bonus.

Now here are some questions for you:

(1) Which two players from your childhood would you want to appear side by side on a Burger King panel?

(2) Should I go with the Croissan'wich for 99 cents, or the free Whopper?

Oh, and if any of you are wondering about the "have it your way" reference, here you go:


  1. Wow. A Croissan'wich cost 99¢ back in 1987? For some reason that sounds so high. I was buying three tacos for a buck at Jack in the Box back in college (early to mid 90's). Anyways... I guess I'd go with the free Whopper. As for the two players I'd like to see next to each other? That's easy. Gwynn and Rickey.

    1. Right? I thought 99 cents was rather steep, too. And that's the discounted price with the purchase of coffee or orange juice! Maybe croissants still seemed so exotic and French back then that Burger King figured they could charge fancy prices for them.

  2. Sounds like this was just about the perfect panel for you then!

    1. Sure was, Jon! Now I have to figure out a good way to store the panel. Those perforations are getting a little flimsy.

  3. Free whopper all the way.

    My favorite childhood BK combo would be Cey and, I don't know, one of the other Dodgers from back then, I guess. I didn't pick out many favorites. That was a post 1970s thing.

    1. A Whopper does sound better than a croissant from Burger King, doesn't it? As for a second Dodger for the panel, you sure have some good players to choose from.

  4. Definitely the free Whopper. This post made me look up the Croissanwich to see how old it was - debuted in 1983 so still relatively new at this point. As for two players, I'm going to go out of leftfield and say Ruben Sierra and Darryl Strawberry.

    1. Wow, 1983? Good research, Bo! Good player choices, too. Would you put both of them in Yankee uniforms?